Hi! I'm Emily, I'm a third-year Psychology student and I'm from Warwickshire. I love old movies and bad music and I'm super passionate about mental health!
Thinking of the future can be at best, exciting, and at worst, scary. Whether you want to plan or not, it’s still a good idea to consider what exactly comes next and how you can prepare for it. Here are some ideas of how to get started so it doesn’t all seem quite so daunting!
What you could need
Leaving university means a lot of different things for people. Whether you are going into employment, a career, saving money, travelling or further study, there are many things that are a great idea to get ready in advance.
A good habit to get into is keeping your CV up to date, and this can be crucial in making sure you’re ready for heading into the real world! Keeping on top of it can really reduce stress when it comes to finally applying to jobs or as a first step into building a plan. It may also be a good time to look into how your banking may change when you’re no longer a student or do some researchinto opening a savings account.
Think about what you want – find what you’ll need and get ready… For example, if you hope to travel, you can make sure your passport is up to date and start applying for visas (and getting excited about it!) It’s all up to you!
Starting to plan
If you think a plan may be helpful to you, there are some places you can start. Firstly, ask yourself: what is important to you? What would you like out of life? What would you like to do? Remember to think about what you want – it’s not selfish to put yourself first sometimes! Sometimes we feel pressured into doing things because of what people around us tell us to do, or what is expected of us. Think about yourself!
You can then start to set yourself achievable goals that are important to you with realistic timescales. You have the time – life doesn’t end when you turn 30 – and if you fall short, pick yourself up and try again. Be forgiving – this year has proven just how unexpected life can be.
What to think about
If the idea of planning your whole life is too enormous for you to even consider right now or you prefer to go with the flow but would like a little direction, think about what could make you happy and how you can get there. It can be as simple as something like living in a city you love or getting a dog – what can you do to get there?
Planning can be scary. Sometimes the future seems so uncertain but remember that the past seemed uncertain until it happened! If planning makes you particularly anxious, you don’t have to do it. If you want to and still struggle, maybe you could consider some contingency plans or start small. Live in the present – what is the next immediate step? Life can just be one small step after another. You don’t have to have a fifty-year itinerary.
Remember to be open too! Things may change and you don’t have to stick to a timetable you set. If you’re unsure, be open to asking your friends and family for help. You don’t have to do it on your own!
To get you started, here are a couple of articles that could help you – how you can make the most of the careers service and some tips on writing your CV! And for even more information, don’t forget to check out this episode of the Fresher Take podcast, all about planning for the future!
- OfS Mental Health Project