The thought of life after college can seem extremely intimidating. A full-time job with brand new full-time responsibilities that can slowly become very overwhelming. Being able to balance out your new hectic schedule with a semblance of a social life may seem impossible. However, in a study shown by The Boston Globe, “An active social life has been shown to reduce a person’s risk of death by at least 50%.” No matter how important work should be, some time should be set aside to socialize with friends and enjoy life. The below suggestions from recent grads and future grads could save your life, literally…
Recent University of Tennessee graduate, Macie Hatmaker, likes to plan ahead when it comes to seeing her friends and socialize. She acknowledges that “Life gets a lot crazier once you graduate and get a full-time job,” however, she tries to schedule lunch dates with friends a couple of weeks in advance. This way everyone can be thinking ahead and mark it on their calendars. Macie says she doesn’t let a single week “Slip away without catching up with a friend and taking a break from my busy workday.”
Make Connections at Work
Making connections with the people you work with at your job is a great way to stay socially active outside of school. You spend a good majority of your time in the office anyway, why not make friends while you are there. Macie also agreed that this was a good tip. “One of the ways I’ve made new friends out of college is by putting myself out there and trying to make connections with people I meet at work, church, or anything else I’m involved in.
However, if you don’t want to go out on a Friday night with your work friends it is still a great idea to ask them for suggestions. University of Tennessee graduate Katie Neal suggest, “Ask people at work what is fun to do on weekends and at night,” especially if you work in a new city.
Reed Smith, a future alumni of the University of Tennessee who is set to graduate in May, has already lined up a great job as the property manager for Southland Properties. He believes making great work connections and socializing with them outside of work makes for a better all-around environment for everyone. “My passion is in the field of real estate and I hope to become very involved in the real estate community and the people within it.”
Be Involved In Your Community
Alongside working for a Real Estate company, Reed Smith is planning on serving on the board for a non-profit organization. Macie Hatmaker is also very involved in Knoxville where she currently is working. She is currently a young life leader at a high school and served as secretary for the Knoxville Girls Cotillion this fall. By doing these things in the community and outside of work, they are able to make other friends and connections and stay involved in the city in some way.
Use Social Media
One of the biggest suggestions from alumni or soon-to-be graduates is to use social media to your advantage. Social media can be attached with bad connotations in many instances, but when used to your advantage it can help you stay social with others and keep you up to date with events around your community. Reed Smith, who is graduating in May, has already started using LinkedIn “Mainly to Network with classmates and people I have met through my job.” He believes a social media platform plays a crucial role in staying connected with old friends and new. Macie Hatmaker is also a huge fan of social media. “Because of social media, I find it is very easy to still feel connected with friends that live in different cities who I do not see as much as I did when I was in college.” Macie has also credited social media with helping her out with her future move to her new city of Charlotte. “With social media, I have already began to follow several News Outlets and social media accounts based out of Charlotte that provides information on restaurant deals, fun weekend activities and other community events.” Social media is a great and easy way to stay connected and continue your social life outside of a college campus.