Full Disclosure: This article was written by a jagaloon who thinks he is starting to figure things out. Read at your own risk.
Michael Scott, former regional manager of Dunder Mifflin Scranton said it best. What most people don’t realize is that mo problems isn’t always a bad thing.
The college lifestyle is so simple. You pick your schedule, you have no real commitments, you do whatever you want, and you never realize that you will won’t experience that feeling again until you retire. In college, you typically have limited to no money, and you either realize something, or you remember it: that people and experience are what it’s all about, and having some extra cash to spice things up is just a bonus. I miss college, I would go back and do it all over in a heartbeat. Fortunately though, I’m no time-traveler. I’m forced to be an adult now and deal with adult issues. Which actually sounds about as fun as licking a wet dog, but it’s actually an opportunity to make the most out of what you learned, both in and out of the classroom.
It’s been three month since I graduated from Ferris State University. In those three months I’ve moved into my own house, started my career, and I’ve made many adult decisions (many of which I documented with my innovative Twitter hashtag, #adulting). The common thread amongst all of these things is that they all come from or with my newly found cash flow. For me, and many of my classmates, that simple lifestyle we enjoyed in school is over.
Reality check to anyone who is still in school: Someday you will have to figure out your own healthcare plan.
Spoiler Alert: It’s not as fun as it sounds.
Mutual funds are a real thing, you have to schedule your own dentist appointments, and getting up before 7am is something you stop complaining about. Buying a new car becomes a viable option, and you learn that there is actually some joy in buying furniture and visiting home improvement stores.
Everyday in your adult life, you are bombarded with problems. How do you best minimize the risk in your stock portfolio? Can you get away with not ironing that shirt for work? How much dental coverage should you have through your workplace’s insurance policy? Is it okay to keep ordering pizza for dinner every other night? Why don’t all of your friends live two seconds from you anymore? What is your favorite mircobrew? Luckily, you have been preparing for all of these questions and more for the last four (or more) years.
The thing about having no money and a simple lifestyle is that you find out very quickly what is important to you, and where your priorities lie. Life may seem like it’s nothing but questions, problems, and issues, but you just have to remember that even though your income has changed, you haven’t. Every hard decision you have to make only helps prepare you even more for the next one.
There’s an old African proverb that goes, ” calms seas do not make skilled sailors.” Every time you have to make a tough choice, like deciding between a blue Porsche and a red one, you learn something. Life would be boring if you never had to make a tough choice, and many times those tough choices will result in great decisions. The important thing to remember is that no matter how much money, how many problems, or how many Porsches you have, you are still that person who somehow lived on Taco Bell and Natty.
In the last episode of the last season of the greatest show ever, The Office, Andy Bernard is reminiscing on his time with Dunder Mifflin. Throughout the series he goes through a roller coaster of situations (many very very unfortunate), but at the end of the day, all of the problems and issues that he when through lead to his dream job.
I’ll finish with a second spoiler alert:
Someday when you look back at your life, you will think about all the great times you’ve had, and if you can just remember that you are always in the good old days you will get to enjoy them to the fullest, twice.