That College Graduation Anxiety


Throughout my life to this point, all 22 years of it, I have had structure. I have always had the security of school in the winter and my father’s house in the summer. If you had asked me in 6th grade what I would be doing in five years I would have told you, “I’ll be a junior in high school”. If you asked me right now what I’ll be doing in five years I would look at you with wide eyes and probably not answer you at all.

College graduation means that, for the first time in my life, all structure is out the window. If I want to go live in Thailand next year, I can. If I want to move to the city and pursue my dream job (if I can manage to figure out what that is) then I can do it. If I want to sit on the couch for a month straight moping about the death of my youth, I can knock myself out.

My first feeling in this situation is terror. But that’s only natural when you’re confronted with something new. Change is scary. But I think that this change will be a good one. This is the “beginning of the rest of your life” as they say.

I don’t think that it should be as scary as it is. If you don’t find a job right after graduation, it isn’t the end of the world. There won’t be any structure, but there will be so much more time to explore, to create, to try every job under the sun until one fits. If your friends are really your friends, they’ll stay in touch. If you’re dating the right person, long distance won’t ruin it. Graduating college should not be terrifying. Things are about to get better.