I’m a post-grad. Who is currently trying to figure out what that means, work-life balance, chasing a career and having a life outside work. I take it that you’ve had similar considerations. Or maybe you still have them.
Passion or Work? A “normal career”, freelancing, art or other socially unaccepted careers? These are questions that are on our minds as post-graduates trying to stand on our own two feet, find our voice, and find a space that accommodates all we have to offer while steering us into growth and allowing us to figure out life after University
Work-Life Balance as a Post Graduate
December 4th marked my one year anniversary as a post-graduate. Since then, I have interned, held contractual and temporary jobs and moved out into a place of my own.
Work-life balance is something you learn gradually. You lose your campus friends as your trains leave in different directions and the friendships die because you’re not becoming. You’re simply holding on to what was, and that which died on graduation day. It moulted into a full-formed beautiful butterfly. It flies away to become something else. You might retain 3 friends, however, don’t expect much.
Whether you move to a new city for work or stay in the same city, making new friends doesn’t come easy especially if you’re introverted.
Work-Life balance is especially hard as a newbie in the working sector, trying to make a name from the career you chose. There are working norms that are acceptable, unacceptable and downright degrading. There are company cultures to adjust to and readjust to while figuring out what that means to you.
You might find in a career you never went to school for. Or working more than 40+ hours a week. Or being forced into a new level of adulting. The kind that needs you to know your rights, navigate office politics, learn new skills, learn negotiating skills while maintaining a great working relationship with peers, clients and colleagues.
Do you work more hours to make a name from your career and to what expense? Do you chase your career dreams and live later? Do you monetise your hobby and where does your family sit in this period of transition? These are important questions that plague the mind of a post-graduate.
Following Your Passion/ Making Your Passion your Job
For some of us, especially some Medium Writers, they’ve been able to make Medium and writing their full-time job. However, they treat as a full-time job. They have impeccable skills and a great level of discipline that takes them to the writing-table even when they don’t feel like it.
When you read their behind the scenes articles, their seriousness shows. Which goes against the popular saying, “ Find your passion and you never have to work a day in your life.” Passion isn’t enough.
As post-graduates, we struggle to find true meaning in our lives, and we place much emphasis on our day jobs to provide this meaning and show us we matter. We exist. We have a purpose in life. Which is why we try so hard to tie it to our passion.
Our day jobs are important and require some passion from us, otherwise, we won’t have much desire to show up if we feel we’re not making any impact. However, the expectation that day-jobs should be the sole- reason for existing and source of meaning places so much pressure on our day jobs and shows a lack of focus on other areas of our lives.
Our day jobs are simply a means of livelihood. There is more to life than going to work, going home, going to Church and repeating the cycle. There’s family, there are hobbies, side projects and friendships to be nurtured.
Are you a postgraduate and what are you struggling with right now?