Self Discovery & Post-academic Journey

¨I graduated!… NOW WHAT?!

If you are reading this, chances are that you have finished your higher education studies or will be doing so very soon. One way or another the INNKick team wants to congratulate you. 

The academic journey is full of surprises ready to be discovered along the way. All the ups and downs come to that magnificent moment you get your diploma. All those tears, efforts and worries seem to be replaced by a nostalgic wave of all the good times experienced and amazing people met along the way.

What no one prepares us for is for that moment of realization. ¨I made it… NOW WHAT?¨.

self discovery session

Many young adults find themselves in a position that they are unsure or do not know at all what to do after graduating. ´Do I start working? Should I continue my studies? Should I just take a break? Maybe I should travel? Internship?¨. Many questions and little answers. 

We, as a young team of professionals, understand and empathize with everyone feeling this way. That is why we want to give a guideline and help anyone trying to figure out their post-academic journey. 

Self reflection is a start

First things first. Let’s not forget the one thing everyone should always keep in mind: there are NO RIGHT OR WRONG choices. Sometimes society, family, and even ourselves make us feel that there are. The fortunate reality is that each one of us has their own journey ahead. Comparing yourself to others or doing anything else than what will make you happy will only bring you more headaches. 

There are many ways to self reflect. Our recommendation is to find a space that feels safe and comfortable to you in which you can sit with your favorite snack and drink and try to answer the following questions. (Remember there is no correct answers

Questions for self reflection

  1. How has my academic journey impacted my life? 

Ex. Have I discovered new interests? Discovered new characteristics in me? What are things people I met along the way have taught me? Who have I networked with?

  1. What are my essential life-pillars & how are they balanced? 

Ex. Money, Family, Friends, Hobbies.

  1. Situational reflection: what is my current situation? What are my limitations and opportunities? 

The essential life-pillars can help you answer this question.

  1. Keep in mind the limitations but focus on the opportunities: do I see myself pursuing an experience within my opportunities?
  2. What are my biggest dreams and fears? 
  3. What am I most grateful for in my life? How does it impact my well being?
  4. Make a list. Ask people close to you: what are my strengths and weaknesses?
  5. What non-academic skills would I like to learn?

Take away message

The questions above can serve you as an introspection to your life. Hopefully giving you a hint to the life you want to pursue. The key is to look at what your needs are to live in a way that brings you closer to where you want to be. The future is far away so there is no need to over worry about it. However, visualizing oneself in the future is a great way to keep you on track while enjoying the journey that will get you there.

After this introspection some of you might feel that doing an apprenticeship or a language exchange is what makes most sense to you. Maybe pursuing a Masters degree is what you feel you need to do. Some might feel that their priority is working on their personal relationships as well as their mental health. Whatever you decide, know that the choice you will make is not definite. As long as you stay true to who you are and who you want to be, every doubtful step you take will become part of your journey.

Remember the 3 key points

  1. Self-reflect without looking for specific answers. Explore who you are and how you feel about the life you have lived and the life you want to have.
  2. It is okay to doubt your choices. Whenever you feel overwhelmed about the future, focus on the next step not the journey ahead.
  3. Do not compare yourself to others. You are the main character in your life. Remind yourself that the point of life is to live it!

If you feel you would like to get guidance outside your family and friends we encourage you to contact us. We will be happy to help you get where you want to be. 

This article is written by Xenia Ramos

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Do you need help about your post academic journey?

As someone who has recently completed your academic journey, I understand that it can be an overwhelming experience to navigate the next steps of your career. Contact Hulya to get help!

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