Oh, the Places You'll Go! 5 Pieces of Real-World Wisdom for Recent High School Graduates by Carew Papritz (The Cowboy Philosopher)
Let's face it, laureates, life as you know it is over! No more 6 a.m. wake-up alarms to catch the bus, late-night study sessions for that big test or possibly living in the same house with your parents. You have fulfilled a goal and obtained your diploma, a universally accepted pre-requisite to get you into the college or career of your dreams. While this should symbolize that you know the path you want to take when you end this chapter of your life, many grads are still trying to figure this out. The unknown is an intimidating thought, but life after graduation is very exciting and a milestone to be proud of!
The remarkable truth about life after high school is that the personal growth, invaluable education and new experiences do not stop – t's a lifelong process! The real-world may seem far away from the comfort of your home and community, but if you carry forth the same strengths that got you through it in the beginning, your road to success will become far less intimidating. Here are some life hacks about leadership and legacy to help you on your journey:
- Want to impress someone? Look them in the face, not in the phone. The most important person in the world is the person you’re with at that moment. You are giving them the most important gift you have in your possession – your time. Constantly looking at your cellphone during a conversation, whether it at the table or while just talking, tells the person you’re with that they’re not as important as the next best text message or call from someone else. People know when they're second fiddle. Give them all of you as long as you are with them.
- Give “thank you's” and “pleases” like flowers. Who doesn’t like to receive flowers? They always make people smile. The same goes for giving out a “thank you” and a “please.” Do it five times a day (or more) and watch as the smiles come your way. And once a smile is given, then a smile is returned.
- Want to really shock someone? Write them a thank-you note or letter. The curious and wonderful thing about a letter is that the time you give to writing a letter becomes part of the letter. Once again, you are giving that best precious possession you have to offer another human being, which is your time on this planet. People love handwritten anything. Besides saving pets, people and photos from a fire (and not necessarily in that order), people will save their letters. It only takes five minutes to write a simple thank-you letter or note to someone. And that five minutes of gratitude on paper will make a long and lasting impression.
- Ask someone how they are doing. Try it. We are so hot and bothered to always be someplace else, thinking about something next to do and always in some sort of 24-7 tizzy that we forget that amazing act of conversation that jolts people out of their whirling dervish lifestyles. Try it the next time you are in a grocery line or at the drugstore. It’s such a simple act of humanity to ask how someone is doing. And what amazing and powerful replies you’ll receive as people are caught off guard with such honesty and empathy.
- A handshake, a hug, a pat on the back. Yes, I know it’s getting tougher out in the big world to touch anyone for any reason. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. We convey so much feeling when we give someone a reassuring touch.
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