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What They Didn't Tell You

And Other Harsh Realities

Graduation May 2016

What They Didn't Tell You

So you go to college. Partly because you feel like it's the right thing to do, or you're forced, or you're lost or you've worked for this your whole life (at least so far.)

You work harder in classes than you ever have because you're actually interested in the material (could this be happening?) and you excel, for once you really feel like you are heading in the right direction.

But just as you grab your degree on the acceptance stage things become different. And a week after graduation when nearly everyone you know, even your classmates who would copy your work, have amazing jobs, you realize your first real pangs of self-doubt.

This isn't really how you envisioned your life after college, or how your real life would be at all. Suddenly you're not just disappointed in how things are turning out, with each rejection letter you're disappointed in yourself.

As the months go by it's harder and harder to be around friends, to be out of your home, to get out of your bed.

You replay your choices over and over again and assign them to each rejection letter. If you wouldn't have done this then maybe you would've landed this position or been at the right place at the right time.

But the worst are your feeds. With every like, every view, every click is mirror to highlight all of your shortcomings. While you wish time would slow down each post shows that life inevitably goes on, even though for you it feels like it will never even start.

These are the things they don't tell you, that it might be really rough out of the gate. You might feel like you've wasted your time. You might even consider giving up completely on your dreams, your goals, and risk losing that spark that made who you really are.

But what they also don't tell you is that these moments of complete hopelessness, these moments where you literally drag yourself through each day only to wake up to another rejection. This is ONLY your foundation. This is where you start, and it’s only a start. It doesn't determine how far you will go or where you will go. It determines if you'll be able to bring yourself through it fighting the whole way to make it out the other side--which totally exists if you let it.

And maybe you're thinking, I'm starting too late, time is slipping away; everyone else is living their dreams and even living your dreams. Maybe time is passing, and maybe everyone else reaching their goals.

But your path is winding, it's interesting, it's your story, and it makes you strong and resilient for the challenges ahead that others might not be able to weather for lack of experience.

Maybe they didn't tell you how it might be, but you didn't want to know. Your journey has been paved by your experience, hard and earned. So maybe you didn't get the amazing job, or created your own business in your early twenties, or became effortlessly Instagram famous. There are better things out there, things that are meant perfectly and exactly for you, and if you stick it out everything will fall right into place.

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