“The Importance Of College Life And Building A Networking”
The New Adventure
The first year in college is a new adventure. Some pack up their belongings and trek far from their homes to start an entirely new life as if their new “job” moved them to a foreign land. Others begin a daily commute to experience what may be similar to starting a new job. In either circumstance, the “job” is the same. You are paying money to a place of higher learning to gain knowledge and skills. It is a “job,” but you are paying your employer, and no one cares if you succeed. You will learn as much or as little depending on the effort you put into your experience.
Read the books, do the work, and pass the tests and you will get a degree. You will make friends, make connections, and create memories that will last a lifetime. However, the purpose of this experience is to build a foundation to move you through to the next level. To begin a career and provide value to an organization willing to pay you for your talent. If you expect someone to invest in you and increase that investment year after year, you need to do more than just “read the books” and “pass the tests.”
During my freshman orientation, a senior told me the most important thing that set me on the path to success. It was simple advice from a very knowledgable and talented man named Xavier. He told me, “You will only get out of this experience what you put into it.” Those simple words put me on a path to challenge myself, my peers, and my professors. I learned that the only person who would push me beyond my own perceived limits was myself.
My point, this is the time to double down on the investment in yourself. Build your future’s foundation stronger than your peers. Doing more than expected will gain more than you thought you could achieve.
The First Taste Of Independence
When you first get to college, everything is fantastic because you are technically your “own boss.” Going to class in your sweats, sleeping late is okay because you can wear a hat and sunglasses, and you can catch a nap after Intro to Psychology. Everything seems fantastic until you realize no one is looking out for you. If you forget your homework, no one will remind you. If you do not prepare for class, you will be the only one to blame for failing the pop quiz. If you get to the end of your college career and bank your future on the career services department to land you your dream job, you may be in for the surprise of your life.
Don’t get me wrong; the career services departments in colleges are fantastic resources and can be the best way to prepare for interviews and landing a job. However, you cannot show up there a week before graduation and expect them to perform miracles. It would be best if you made it a priority to familiarize yourself with your school’s career services department in the first month. You may be thinking you will have all the time in the world to get that sorted out. Every success is an accumulation of small and smart decisions that you plan and execute. Visiting career services the first month needs to be the first decision you make as an “independent person.” My point: while you may be free to do what you want, creating a personal schedule tied to your goals will help you complete small tasks regularly, which will lead to monumental accomplishments. Conversely, doing “whatever you want” and then attempting to complete grand things at the last minute will not result in the success you desire.
Thinking For Yourself
Now that you know it all (as most people believe they do when starting a new life phase), you need to start thinking for yourself. At this stage of your life, thinking for yourself means you need to plan a little. Build a personal schedule to complete regular tasks daily. Build a network of mentors and friends who can help you through the college experience. Learning how to do a keg stand from “Big Mike” may be fun, but will not help you get an interview at a Fortune 500 company. Those experiences have their place; what you need to do is build a mastermind group of like-minded peers and advisors who can help you stay focused.
Peers of varying interests and backgrounds can help expose you to ideas you may not have thought of in the seclusion of your studies. Meeting regularly with your professors and taking advantage of their knowledge and experience should be on the top of your “to-do” list. Having a regular group study sessions with your peers can help when you need another perspective on a project or kickstart an idea. The point here is simple: while everyone in college wants to fit in and go with the flow, be a maverick by executing a plan to build future success. Be a leader, not a follower, think for yourself, not with the group. It will make all the difference in your life.
What Do I Do Now
If you are at the beginning of any new experience, make a plan. Think about a goal you want to achieve in five years. Visualize the goal and see the steps to complete it. Now, write down the five steps to get there, one each year. Focus on the first step and make five small tasks to achieve the first goal. A two-month timeframe should be the schedule to complete each step. Devote some part of each day to work towards the completion of that goal. If you work ten, twenty, thirty, or sixty minutes each day, you will complete your goal in two months. You will be amazed how much can be accomplished by only devoting a small amount of time to a task every day.
At the end of ten months, your five small tasks will result in completing your first significant step. You will now take the next two months and review what you have accomplished. You will consider and check your plan, making modifications if necessary. Within the two months of reflection, you will appreciate what difference devotion to a schedule and a plan can make on your future goals. My final point is simple. No one can run a marathon without a devoted and consistent training plan—smaller goals and distances completed regularly is the only path to success. If you do the same with your career goals, you will look back and will be amazed at how far you have traveled, taking small steps every day.
We Are Here To Help
The goal of GetAGoodStart.com is to share the knowledge of over thirty years of experience to help set the foundation and prepare you for the professional world post-college, no matter if it is in the “typical” corporate environment or a virtual workspace. I have designed these courses to help you to accelerate and achieve success faster than your peers. Putting the information into practice consistently can assist you in building a reputation that speaks to your competency and ability to succeed.
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I know you will find the information beneficial to your current and future situation. I hope you take the next step and enroll to benefit from the entire course to make your journey of success more achievable and faster. Thank you for your feedback and suggestions.
If you have any additional questions or comments, please feel free to contact me at askScott@GetAGoodStart.com.