Ever heard of these? You know when you were younger and our parents would cart us off to nursery or preschool or whatever kind of place they left us with strangers and other nightmare children for a day…? Well they were dragging themselves to work, to work hard and pretend like they know what they’re doing. If I’m honest, they probably knew/know what it is they’re meant to do whereas I just bumble along, bouncing off things and knocking things over as I go, trust me stuff like that actually happens, I walked into a door the other day…
Anyway, instead of sharing an episode of my PhD escapades, I thought I’d take a different angle, and like some kind of guardian angel (not angle), gathered some opinions and advice from some of my friends… They all have different ambitions, jobs, positions and most of all, they aren’t made up!
Let’s be honest, who isn’t nervous or shitting a masonry brick when they start at a new job? Well what awaits you after you start? and is every job as cushty as it is made out to be? Most of all, is the adult life what you expected…
Well, I asked all of them the same questions, which were:
- What was your ideal job after graduating and have you changed your mind since
- Whats the best bit of advice you’ve received when looking for jobs?
- How does it feel to adult and is it what you expected?
Joe, 23, Nottingham:
“My ideal job after graduating was and still is a PR manager for a football team. I haven’t changed my mind as I work in sports PR now and it’s the best way to get into the “dream” job.
Best bit of advice is to decide on what you actually want to do, and if you’re willing to do something else in the mean time. It depends on how desperate you are for a job and what your experience is. Just make sure that when you apply you are yourself.
I still don’t feel like I’m “adulting”, but work feels good. It’s good doing something I enjoy so I doesn’t feel that much like work. As for what I expected, I’ve worked full time before uni so sort of knew what it’d be like. The responsibility is great but a bit daunting at times.”
Joe currently works in PR and controls media at sports events, I’d be fair in guessing that he is loving his job despite how stressful it is.
In order to make this have some variation, got to spice it up a little right? Best change the person. Got to vary this more than the amount of crisps you get in a Walkers bag… scandalous.
My next volunteer works as an officer of activities in a students union. Wildly different to the previous tribute, but offers a different outlook!
Kristy, 23, Newcastle:
“My ideal job when I graduated was to be an educational psychologist, then I did a placement in a school and thought fuck that. So yeah I’ve definitely changed where I want to go but I’m pretty set now.
Best bit of advice I’ve received when looking for jobs is to use LinkedIn. Like honestly right now it sounds daft and loads of people have it but I only got it last year and it’s opened up a whole world of opportunities you didn’t know were there and a great chance to network with people who are in the field you want to be in.
Being an adult is actually scary. When I was younger it was all ‘ I can’t wait to grow up because then I can eat all the ice cream I want”…now I’d rather be still not eating as much ice cream as I want and not having to manage paying all my own bills and rent and all the responsibilities. It’s not all bad at all, but I think as a student you can still be a bit daft and then you graduate and SHIT. Shit gets real, a real adult in the real world.”
This is definitely accurate, adult life gets real very fast, bills, rent, bills, food, rent, bills, taxes, did I say bills? Because rent and bills. If you couldn’t tell, they’re really annoying. Shit gets real, real fast.
The next tribute actually has had a different journey following their graduation, but can offer some pretty valid points… that work is hard, considering some places want 30 years experience, every single pokemon, an actual dragonball and a flawless CV. Tough right?
Fiona, 22, North Yorkshire:
“I didn’t have an ideal job when I graduated. I had no idea what I wanted to do in the future, partly because my degree didn’t lead into any particular career path. I went travelling instead and it took about 7 months after leaving Uni for me to work out what job I wanted.
Honestly, I feel like none of the advice I’ve been given has been particularly helpful. I’ve been told, and telling myself, that starting at the bottom and working up is the best way to get into a career but even “entry level” jobs these days seem to want ten years experience.
I don’t feel like I’m adulting right now, I moved back in with my parents and I haven’t got a ‘proper job’ yet. I feel less like an adult than I did when I was at Uni.”
Everyone has their own path that they have marked out for themselves with idealities and nice thoughts but sometimes shit hits the proverbial fan and stuff happens that isn’t according to plan. Sometimes I think I have idealities and then my PhD decides to curl out a pearler of a problem in front of me…
I decided to collar another one of my friends but he is tied up with some masters research so he did what he could! I’m grateful, as research can be a fickle bitch.
Matt, 21, Sunderland:
“Currently thinking of doing a PhD, however if I don’t get one, I was thinking that I could do a research technician job for a year or move abroad to study/work. Canada maybe? They do shit right.
Get a LinkedIn page or use any online jobs page to put your CV around to as many people as possible.
Not sure really I find that my research project has felt like working but is rewarding whilst being tiring.”
Matt studies a masters and is yet to officially grace the world of work with his presence, maybe worth catching up with him when he has decided what to do and has finished?
The last person in this nice little collection of folk has gone out there and begun adulting too, and has adulted hard. Much like the others, has an opinion of work that most of us share… that it has good bits but some shit ones too. Especially Mondays.
Nicole, 23, Newcastle:
“My ideal job was always to become a solicitor at a big commercial firm. I worked hard, did what I needed to and got my training contract. I always knew it would be hard but my god I did not expect just how tough it would be. I haven’t changed my mind yet. Sometimes on a Monday I look at other jobs but once I make it to Tuesday I’m usually okay.
My best bit of advice when looking for a job is to drink lots of tequila, listen to motivational music and dance a lot to get you through the awful few months that will inevitably be coming. The first night after I got my job I crashed and slept like a baby. I don’t think you realise how much you stress and worry about the next stage, the face to face interview or the assessment that you have, or how you’ve done in any of the above until you wake up the day after your best sleep in months to realise it’s 3pm and you still have shit to do.
As the great people of the internet say, “being in your 20s is like playing a game where you’ve skipped the tutorial and you just run around with no idea of how anything works”. Never has a truer word been spoken. I still have no idea how to adult and don’t see that skill coming any time soon. For now I’ll keep going to the SU pretending I don’t have responsibilities.”
I must say, if you’re going to drink Tequila whilst looking for jobs, be careful what you apply for and put in your application. Drink in moderation, moderation being the place you find yourself at that point in time…
I’d like to thank the people for helping me out with this post, I’ve written a hell of a lot of words, like 3 times more than I’ve written on my thesis today… but I would really like to thank my friends for this one.
I think we can all presume that adult life is not as fun as it seems to be when you’re younger?
Wouldn’t it be better if adult life was the same as nursery, but instead you get paid to pick your nose, draw shite pictures and play with lego all day? I’m sure there’s a job that allows people to do that. Great mental image right?
Who knows where the next surprise will come from in this mine field of an experience…
(ALSO, a music recommendation is Kaleo. Yes I’m going to keep plugging them, because they’re awesome)