Photo Credits: Chellypic
May 2014 was the best month of my life. I graduated from college, got my degree, had time to relax and have a little fun. I was able to focus on the things I enjoyed the most and I start my own blog. What I was originally hoping to do was join Teach for America and start my adulthood journey as a teacher in training in another state…..but, God had other plans. After I enjoyed my few months of relaxing, I was like wait a minute, I need a job! LOL. In 2014-2015 I finally found a job….and another job….and another job….and another job but, I have to say that I learned a lot along the way that has helped to be the woman I am now. 2015 has been pretty smooth and at times rocky and I don't regret anything that has happened. However, going from job to job mostly within the year of 2015, I realized how quickly I had to grow up and make some quick and serious decisions. I realized that there maybe no such thing as relaxing anymore. I realized that most of your pay check may not make it to your savings account or wallet. I realized that your needs are more important than your wants. I realized a ton of things in the year of 2015 that helped me to transition into an adult…and this adult life is no joke. So I want to share with you a few things that I've learned along the way and I pray that they may help you as you hop on this adulthood band wagon. By the way, this is not in any specific order.
1. Do not be afraid to ask questions
• I remember when I was in elementary school, I had a fear of asking for help. My mom told me at a young age to not be afraid to ask questions, if you have one, then ask it. Of course she told me this in her heavy Jamaican accent (lol). Asking a question that may be dumb to others will be edifying for you. Those questions that have may be questions that others are afraid to ask and need the answer to as well. Your question will not only help you but, it will help others around you. If you don't ask, you will never know.
2. Do not be afraid to talk to your manager or boss
• For some reason, people have a fear of talking to their manager or boss about whatever it maybe in terms of the workplace or personal. For example, “He may not give me the time off” or “She will not care” or “I have ideas but, I don't think he will care”. It does not hurt to talk to them and explain your situation. Yes I know that there are some managers and bosses out there that literally don't care about your feelings or your other priorities that you have out side of the work place. Moreover, you will get your self worked up and frustrated if you never take the chance and try. You will never know what the response might be, they are human beings with a position just like you and I. The only difference is they have more responsibilities over the workplace than you do and they also have a boss to report to as well.
3. Motivation is key
• Out of the mouth of song artist Kesha, she sings “Wake up in the morning feeling like P.Diddy”.....and out of the mouth of song artist Beyoncé, she sings “I woke up like this, FLAWLESS”..... now I don't know about y'all but, I don't not feel like P.Diddy when I wake up in the morning and I don't always look flawless when I wake up either. When I open my eyes in the morning after hearing that annoying alarm go off, my index finger reaches for my phone to slide the snooze button for 10 more minutes. It is not easy at all to wake up with a mindset ready to work, especially if you're like me working with 3-5 year olds. You need to find that thing that will motivate you to start your day off right. For me it's when I research new ideas that I can bring to the classroom the next day. Doing that really gets me going because I look forward to implementing something new into the classroom and seeing the sudden changes that occurs. If you don't have any motivation to go to work, each day will be miserable. You have to feed yourself and your spirit with words of encouragement. Something I use to do in college is write scriptures on post it notes that helped to motivate me to start my day off right and it helped so much because I memorized pieces of it during the day. Find what motivates you.
4. Organize yourself the night before
• Staying organized helps so much especially if you're a busy bee and always on the go. The amount pressure you will feel trying to accomplish big jobs last minute will drive you insane. This is something that I'm still trying to tackle myself. The times that I have stayed consistent in organizing myself the night before, my mornings were so easy going and I had time to actually sit down and eat breakfast which was rare for me. Organizing your self the night before could be having your outfit ready, writing your to-do list, completing work that you took home, and for the ladies it could be prepping your hair so it's an easy fix in the morning. The things that ponder in your mind once you lay your head down on your pillow about what do you need to do when you wake up….just do it before you fall asleep. And trust me, you will have a good nights rest once it's done.
5. Dressing up can boost your confidence
• Depending on the kind of job you have, you may the leisure of wearing whatever you want….that's within your jobs dress code of course. If you do, you're lucky. When working with kids, there's no point of wearing my nice pants and blouse and heels. But, when I was working as an assistant middle school teacher, dressing up made me feel great. It boosted my confidence and I was ready to take on the day. Whether that day was great or not, I know that I looked good regardless (lol). The way you dress and the colors you wear can affect your mood. So wear something that makes you feel good and look good. You're dressing up for you and no one else. As long as you feel great in what you have on, the rest of your day will feel great as well.
6. When your job turns out to be seasonal
• When I realized that my internship/ job as a middle school teacher was coming to an end, I freaked out a bit….but then I was at peace. I was at peace because I had to remember that God has something better. I had to keep in mind that God knows the plans for my life and where I need to be in order for them to come into fruition. My advice to you is to embrace new transitions or new beginnings. As long you trust in God, you do not need to worry about what your next move is, he already has it planned for you.
• Keep in consideration other opportunities that friends and family tell you about but, continue stay in prayer and trust God.
7. When starting a new job, go in with a positive attitude
• Even if it's not the job of your dreams, this job you have may just be a stepping stone to your dream job.
8. Try not to discuss your likes and/or dislikes about your job with your co-workers
• This can open up a door that will be hard to close. To start off a possible friendship by discussing your likes and dislikes about the job, especially if it's not edifying either of you, is not the greatest start. It's best to keep things cool, casual and fun in the work place. If you chose to share parts of your life with your co-workers, great. However, if you discuss likes and dislikes with your co-workers all the time, you’ll become critical of everything and everyone. You will never give that job opportunity a true chance and it will make it difficult for you to see how you can grow and develop there.
9. Do not take your stress from work home with you and vice versa
• You just may end up taking your frustrations out on family and friends or co- workers. Try your best to gather your thoughts and feelings and put them to the side. If you need to pray independently or with a friend, vent to a friend, write down everything that's racing through your mind, or just sit in silence then do that or whatever else you need to do to relieve any stress or frustrations you may have that day.
10. Make time for the things you love and enjoy
• Do not live a robotic lifestyle where wake up, shower, get dressed, go to work, break, work, leave, eat, relax, sleep and the same thing continues 5 or 7 days a week. For me, I love to write, dance, listen to music, watch makeup and lifestyle tutorials, research crafts and activities for my class and chill with my friends. Whatever you love to do, please make time for it. You will be a miserable person in this walk of life just living to make money and pay bills and not enjoying this life that God has blessed you with.
11. Make time for God
• Lastly, be sure to make time for God in your busy schedule. Lord knows I am super guilty of this. This should be an easy thing to do and it is for some. However, you want that time with God to be genuine and not something you do to check off of your list. The time you get to spend with Christ, value that time and give him as much of your self as you can. We can't have a successful day, week, month, and year without God especially in your adulthood. I realized how easy it is to “Do you” when there's a load of responsibilities you have to take care of. But, God wants you to stay consistent and faithful to him before the responsibilities pile up. He wants to lighten your load and give you peace. Trust in the Lord, and cast your worries on him. He knows what to do with them better than we can. All in all, give God some your time and your days, weeks, months and entire year will be better.
I hope this list helped most of you that are hopping on this adulthood journey wagon. If you're a pro and have this down, kudos to you. I can honestly say I'm still a work in progress on each advice that I gave. These are things I've learned and realized throughout my year in 2015 and I had to learn fast. I hope your job and adulthood experience/ transition is better than mine and again I hope this list helped. God Bless.
"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord rather than for people"
Colossians 3:23 NIV/NLTd
My name is Raquel Meraki and I'm a young woman who is on the journey of self discovery and independence.