Restless Graduates

My university just had commencement last weekend, and I’ve already been contacted by multiple restless graduates.

I don’t know what to do with myself now.
School and finals were going 100 mph, and suddenly everything has stopped.
For years now, I’ve had assignments and feedback, direction and advice, and now I’m … on my own. 

md-duran-628456-unsplashI remember feeling the same way. During my years as a creative writing major, I remembered thinking how when I graduated I would finally have time to read all the books I wanted and to work on my own creative projects. But when I graduated, I realized I barely remembered how to read for fun– or how to embark on a writing project that wasn’t a class assignment.

It comes. It does.

What helped me was setting into a new routine, joining a writing group for creative companionship and accountability, embracing rest, and forcing myself to read. Yes, forcing– even though I had very much looked forward to it, I didn’t know how to start. I had to basically assign myself a book. Once those wheels were re-greased, everything got easier.

I remember going back to my campus– it had been my home for three years, and suddenly I had to check in with the guard shack like I was a stranger. It was such a jarring experience. I felt a little … chewed up and spat out. It wasn’t the school’s fault. It’s just the nature of transition. The Next Big Thing felt both too sudden (boom! you’re a graduate! figure it out!) and too slow (what do I do with all this time now?).

It sorts itself out. Life. God. Friends. Time. Priorities.

Be patient, give yourself grace, find a community, and– if necessary– grind through the hard stuff. You’ll be okay.

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