NOTICE: This post is originally written for Student Association for Social Entrepreneurship, SASE. Please visit SASEUSA.org for more inspiring blog posts.
I have been reading a book about connections. Especially with graduation coming soon, I am quite nervous. I don’t know what will happen later. But sometimes I do think, what can I do to make myself more valuable for others. In order to be able to sell myself to the potential employer, I should invest in myself before I can convince others to invest in me.
For you, like me, a 23 year-old college student, you should not be stingy in money when it comes to one of the following three aspects:
1. Health Insurance
Oh, you know, health is so important. I am sure your parents, your grandparents, or even your great-grandparents tell you the same thing. But really, you know you just can’t doing anything when you are sick.
College students like to give themselves plenty of excuses to postpone all tasks, homework and projects. Health is one of the common one. “Sorry, I have been sick” or “The flu has been bothering me…” The problem here isn’t about how much you need to accomplish; it is the capability of achieving the goal, which requires energy and time. A stuffed nose is enough of an excuse to stay in bed all day, doing nothing.
So why not be healthy? Regular diets, frequent exercise/work-out and adequate amount of sleep will secure your health on the first hand. Health insurance isn’t the monthly payment for insurance company; it’s rather you treat yourself nicely so your body doesn’t protest or revenge. Buy yourself good food, get yourself a fitness center membership, etc. You know, sometimes, it doesn’t hurt to spend some money to live a better life. If you want to complain about how poor a college student you are, google how to live a good life cheaply. It isn’t hard.
Please stay healthy and take care of yourself before you go after your dreams.
>>Take a quick health quiz to see how healthy you are: QUIZ.
2. Don’t just look smart but act smart
I have some friends who are now in senior manager position. Once, one told me that he recently hired a sales manager to help him meet the marketing and sales goal. The reason my friend hire this guy is because he seems smart. But as a few months passed by, there isn’t any significant increase in sales. According to my friend, this newly hired manager is satisfied of what he’s got and not open minded enough to learn more as he works.
Have you ever wondered why you are in college? Well, I did. Sadly, I didn’t understand why until my senior year. College is a place to make you look smart. But it doesn’t make you act smart if you don’t have a goal. Learning and attending classes could be a fun process if you enjoy what you are learning and you know where you can apply this knowledge to.
If you don’t have a goal, or you don’t know much about what you enjoy doing, why not explore by attending different activities. Go to leadership programs, attend guest speech held by various organization, participate in a movie discussion, etc. College is wonderful for its different adventures and opportunities. Make your tuition worthwhile for your bachelor degree. Invest in your brain. Looking smart isn’t too much a compliment, and you should know this. Gotta give it some definition.
Go for some extracurricular activities and events. IF you don’t know what to do, check out the public calendars. Each college, organization, school and city has its own calendars that lists all events. Don’t stare at your computer screen, go check out the events. IF you have questions, ask the event coordinators. I promise you they are at least 10 times nicer than you expected because they want people to attend events. That’s why they post it online for YOU to review.
3. Stop being anti-social
You know how people get their jobs? They get it because they know somebody who works in that company; yet, they are the reason that friends work together (or they work in similar industries).
One thing I want to stress here is that you gotta have a social life. Go out and meet some new friends, and learn about them. This is another learning opportunity. Maybe host a party that you can invite your friends and their friends.
Maybe buy your new friend a coffee? Invite them over for a tea party? Sharing information, whether it’s about work, school or personal life, is always helpful. You learn the difference. And these little gatherings and parties will build your connection. Tell them what you like. Someday, maybe your friends will think of you when they were asked if they knew somebody like you. Then, they would recommend you.
Building your own network takes a while, even if you have your friends’ friends to help. It does take a while before they can relate you to certain skills. Leave them with some good impressions. Don’t be afraid to be yourself.
>>Take a quick quiz to test how social you are: QUIZ