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Just Graduated: Staying Positive During The Job Hunt

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Jun. 19 2015, Published 3:30 a.m. ET

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Congratulations Graduate! You did everything like you were supposed to do and completed all of your requirements on time. Grades have rolled in, your cap and gown form was submitted and your internship threw you the cutest graduation party on your last day; and as soon as you could take your last bite of celebratory cake, graduation day came.

Your family smiled, cheered and gave you that proud, tingly feeling you get when watching a touchy- feely moment on a 90’s sitcom (Think Theo’s graduation on The Cosby Show to be exact.)

You had a plan…every day off from your part-time job, you would spend applying to jobs in your field. You scoured Linked In, Monster, Indeed, ED 2010—everything in or related to your field. But life rarely goes as you plan unfortunately.

Two weeks went by and you haven’t received any calls for interviews.  Several more weeks have passed and nothing; the nauseating feeling that the degree you’ve worked so hard for may not be worth much starts to tip toe it’s way into your psyche. Oh and let’s not forget, that good ole’ grace period before you have to begin paying back those student loans is going to come to an end, and Sallie Mae doesn’t play games, she wants her money on time. So you do what’s only natural: you begin to panic, and question life.

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I know this, because I’ve been there. After my plan to apply and send out resumes every week didn’t work out the way I envisioned, I began to feel as though maybe something was wrong with me, or I wasn’t cut out for a career in media. Depression and discouragement were starting to seep in. I snapped out of that funk quickly, because I knew those negative feelings weren’t going to get me where I wanted to be.

My friends who graduated before me told me what I was experiencing was nothing new. They reminded me that it can take anywhere from six months to a year for a recent graduate to find a job in their field. My friends were the backbone of my support system. Don’t keep all of the uneasy feelings to yourself, talking about it can be therapeutic because you’ll see you’re not alone struggling in the quest to achieve full-time adult goals.

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In fact, you and your friends can create a network amongst yourselves, e-mail each other job postings you come across  in your own research that you believe they would be good candidates for. Not only does that serve as support for one another, but it’s comforting to know your friends believe in you and want you to succeed just as much as they want success for themselves.

Be patient, timing is everything, just think of how accomplished you’ll feel when you receive your first job offer, after you’ve remained diligent and applied yourself.

Graduation is only the first step, the job hunt is the second. Don’t panic because you haven’t secured your dream job right out of college. Your twenties are for figuring out life’s pieces. Enjoy and respect the process.

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