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Advice for Grads: Stop Working So Darn Hard

In this week's Bad Advice, Hannah offers some words to recent graduates: get over yourself, get a job, and stop caring so much about everything.

by
Hannah Sternberg

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May 29, 2013 - 2:00 pm
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college-graduate

Submit your questions about friendship, relationships, careers, family, or life decisions to PJMBadAdvice@gmail.com or leave a question in the comments section, and I’ll answer it in Bad Advice, PJ Lifestyle’s new advice column!

This week, I’d like to offer some Bad Advice to recent college graduates. Here are some pointers, practical and spiritual, on how to cope with adult life. Share them with a grad you know and it might actually get him or her to stop bugging you with questions about how to be a grown-up.

Personal Life: This may sound like bad advice, but pay your friends for rides, and go to a bar by yourself every once in a while.

1) Whenever a friend drives you somewhere (especially if you asked them as a favor), offer them gas money. Okay, this is less of an “adult life” thing, and more something you should have learned since you were old enough for you and your friends to drive, but it becomes more important as your friends move off their parents’ bankrolls and start getting those fun student-loan notifications in the mail.

2) Friendship is a lot harder when class schedules and a multitude of school-run clubs don’t bring you together on a regular basis, and you no longer live in a building full of people your age who freely socialize between rooms or suites. So, put the work in on the friendships you want to keep: schedule lunch meet-ups or happy hours, ask your friends about their days (because you are no longer spending most of it playing Rock Band or going to class together — he might have done something you weren’t there to witness!), and then honor your commitments.

3) If you feel all alone in a new city and there aren’t many people your age at your office to befriend, join a Meetup group, take up a hobby, go to a networking event, and, in the meantime, while you build up your group of friends, don’t be afraid to do stuff alone. Don’t sit in your apartment by yourself every night because you’re still getting to know folks. Some people are so scared of being seen in public without a companion that they’d rather stay inside all the time and get to know no one at all. Don’t be one of those sad people.

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my best friend's half-sister makes $77 an hour on the internet. She has been unemployed for seven months but last month her pay was $21826 just working on the internet for a few hours. Read more on this site... www.Can99.com
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Some advice for (Mostly) males I guess: #3 (feeling alone and not meeting people) And this is based on experience:

1. Find a regular hangout at a decent to up scale restaurant (even medium priced steakhouses are good).
2. Show up weekly, dress well, even if for drinks, have dinner occasionally.
3. Sit at the bar, you can chat with the bartenders and there is usally a tv with a ball game on so you don't just stare at your drink or your food.
4. Get to know the bartenders and management staff by name.
5. Become a "regular."
6. Interesting things can and will happen. Business introductions, golf game invites (Hey Jack you play don't you, we need a fourth tomorrow), invitations to social events, romantic introductions. You have no idea how many well-dressed classy businesswomen eat alone in bars in nice restaurants while travelling.

Just my two cents.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
May I add a couple of points for the 20-30-somethings I know? Put on your Big Girl/Big Boy panties, move out of your parents' house and get a freaking JOB!!!!! ANY job!!! Sitting around playing video games while you wait for the perfect job to stroll into the living room is wasting your life!!! I don't care if you don't know what you want to be when you grow up! Why don't you just do SOMETHING, and maybe growing up will happen while you do it. If you majored in something stupid like Feminist Studies or Philosophy, NOT MY PROBLEM!!! GET A JOB, move out on your own and start to live as an adult. I know you say you can't afford it, so GET A ROOMMATE!!!

OK, now on the relationship front: 1) Ladies, if he says he never wants to get married and have kids BELIEVE HIM!!! Don't spend years waiting around believing that one day he will love you enough to change his mind. Don't get pregnant thinking that this will magically change his mind. If your dream is marriage and a family, find someone else to do it with. Even if he does knock you up, he will NEVER be the husband and father you wanted.

2) Always be willing to walk away from the relationship. Don't give me this "unconditional love" crap. There is no such thing, except maybe a mother and infant - and even then, moms sometimes wish that infant wasn't there. Between adults, "Unconditional love" just means you have an extremely high put-up-with-crap threshold, and I guarantee that guy/girl you pretend you love unconditionally will give you all the crap you can stand. You have to be willing to kick him/her to the curb. If s/he really loves you, s/he will be willing to change his/her behavior in order to get back into your good graces. Otherwise, s/he will walk away and find someone else to torment. I have one friend whose beau spent more time at the curb than the recycle bin, but finally (after about ten years) grew the heck up and became the kind of guy she really wanted. During that ten year period, she did not sit around and whine, waiting for him to come back to her, she worked hard and became successful professionally, and she dated a lot. She had a good life without him.

My final point is that while you are sitting around waiting for your dream job and your dream lover, life is happening all around you and, frankly, passing you by. Get off your butt and LIVE!
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"The receptionists, personal assistants, and office administrators are often some of the savviest badasses in your company."

At some point, I've held all the above positions. I made it my business to make my boss/group look good, estab. integrity, became problem spotter & solver, & eventually had my opinions valued. Worked my way up to top Proj. Mgr. by being the person ready to do WHATEVER needed done. I even knew the mailroom outgoing sched./rules, so if there was something last min. I could do it myself; not harrass the poor ppl. also at the busy end of their day. When push came to shove, *I* was the one others would go out of their way to help, as I'd been there for them. (I also acknwldg these days reciprocity has fallen so far outta favor it doesn't hardly exist)

Never, but NEVER scorn anyone, no matter how much further down the food-chain you may *think* they are -- b/c for sure along the way, that will be the one person you desperately need to complete some urgent, ultra important task.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Based on my experience, good romantic relationships do require work and dedication, on a daily basis. I've known so many people who thought they met their perfect match, and then as time went on and the "honeymoon period" ended as it inevitably does, they gave up because they didn't feel those "butterflies" anymore. They thought they would find their "soulmate" somewhere else who would give them permanent butterflies, not facing the fact that with any two people, accommodation and commitment is essential. Many marriages have ended because one person didn't want to work at the marriage. Or they thought that everyday humdrum meant that the relationship was fatally flawed. That's horribly self-centered.

If you really love someone, you need to always consider the needs of the other person, and tell yourself each day that you will commit yourself to that person, and meeting his or her needs in a practical way. In that way, you can keep the romance and love alive.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
>> A good relationship is hard work

Here we see the limits of offering gender-neutral advice about friendships by a woman. Folks, the subject of friendship in the Western world is as long and deep as any idea there is, and at no point up until now did anyone think that relationships are work. This is how women want men to think about it so they perform as women imagine they would like them to, but since good men never do act as a woman would they always dream of the impossible. Good luck with that. Friendship is a good bit more natural than this oft-repeated canard implies. This just in from soccer soccer-momdom: "marry your best friend". Every non-feminized man will roll his eyes on that one.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Also, if you are interviewing for a job remember that after you leave, the receptionist may be asked for her opinion about you. Maybe she's worked there a long time and knows who will fit in, or the boss just trusts her gut instinct. I sometimes got this question about applicants when I was the receptionist both for a property management company and an insurance company. Sometimes I said, "He seems like a nice person, with a good head on his shoulders." Sometimes I just shrugged and said, "Not sure." The point is, being nice can pay off.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Good points all!
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"The receptionists, personal assistants, and office administrators are often some of the savviest badasses in your company."

There ARE no receptionists or personal assistants in my company. The office administrator was laid off two years ago, and her position was eliminated. This sort of thing is going on in a lot of companies. Employers just can't afford that kind of overhead anymore.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"The receptionists, personal assistants, and office administrators are often some of the savviest badasses in your company."


These are still common positions though, and Hannah is correct. These people are valuable, treat them so! I am a 50+ YO engineer/tech and have had 25 YO engineers attempt to "direct" me in my work. Those young engineers learned the hard way. The smart ones tap into my experience.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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