There’s a funny irony in the fact that the fall season seems to coincide with so many of us twenty-somethings making a start on the rest of our lives. Whether you’re embarking on that final, crucial year at college, enrolling on a master’s degree or beginning an internship, these are the months for moving on and up. All in all, there’s not much falling to be done.
Whether this month is the start of a new career, or just the start of the hunt for one, it’s important to remember these golden rules:
1. Be unique
Every job or course that you’re applying for is going to be different to the one you applied for yesterday. Make sure you’re thorough in your research, and tailoring your application exactly to what’s required of you. Putting the extra effort in at this stage will pay off in the months to come. Give your future self something to thank you for.
2. Branch out
Even if you were lucky enough to leave school knowing exactly what you wanted to do in life, don’t limit yourself to just one future. There are so many possibilities and ways to adapt what you’ve done so far to something you might never have thought you were capable of doing. If you feel drawn to a particular placement, give it a go. All experience is good experience.
3. One step at a time
Change can be overwhelming if it all comes around at once. If this fall means trying to find a new job or college, as well as moving out or buying a new car, make sure you prioritise, rather than trying to accomplish everything at once.
4. There’s always tomorrow
This season might be the prime time to start something new, but that doesn’t mean you’ve failed if nothing seems to be working. Just because one company might not accept you, doesn’t mean another won’t. Every door that closes just opens another, so stay positive and keep working hard. Use the atmosphere around you at this time of year, when everyone is starting afresh, as motivation to persevere.
This is the optimum time of year to start finding yourself. Things are generally less frivolous than summer, and you have the opportunity to cosy up at home and make a life plan. Use this time to study harder and do more research, as well as think very carefully about what you really want for your future. Everything around you signals change – the leaves are amber, the menu at Starbucks is on its seasonal rotation – so go with the flow and start to make your own.