One Year Out: Lessons from the Road (of Life)

It’s been about a year since I graduated from BC and stepped into the real world. In that time, I’ve learned a few things about success and happiness. So here are my words of wisdom, for whatever its worth:

Most people have no idea what they’re doing. They’re just good at hiding it- So don’t get intimidated by age, titles, and long monologues with big words. They’re probably just as clueless as you.

Keep in touch with as many people as you can– It’s easier said than done but a strong network is worth the effort. Even if you don’t see someone on a regular basis, try to remember one thing about that person, whether it’s family, a hobby, or their hometown. It shows that you cared enough to remember that fact.

Organization is key- Come up with a system for juggling multiple responsibilities (work, family, friends, etc.) Make calendars and to-do lists.

Never leave home without some cash in your pocket– A surprising amount of places still don’t accept credit card.

Know your limits, then push them– But not too hard. Life is a marathon and its just as important not to burn yourself out.

Attitude is the one skill you always have– From day one, bring a positive, enthusiastic attitude.

Take care of the people that take care of you– I’m talking about waiters, admins, and anyone else that provides you a service. Tip them and ask them how their day went. You never know when that goodwill will come in handy. I stayed at a hotel for several months and got to know the room service staff fairly well. One night, the kitchen mixed up my order and the delivery lady caught it right away.

Surround yourself with the right people– Because the right people will always have your back, no matter how dire the situation

Figure out what makes you happy– I don’t agree with people who say your profession must be what makes you happy. In a perfect world, yes, everyone would love their job. However, it is more important that your job allows you to do what you love.

Figure out what’s important to you– And make sure everything you do is aligned with the pursuit of those things