Your first degree may not earn you a living, it could be what you did during and after your higher education that will pay the bills.
Right from when we were young, our parents or guardians save money, gather resources and try as much as possible give us a proper formal education.
They see formal education, most importantly first degree as a license to get a good job, good salary and of course a good life.
But things have changed. Like what I found on social media, “Education is the key but the padlock has been changed”.
A first degree is almost getting hundreds of thousands of graduates nowhere. Jobs are scarce, employment opportunities are few and the chances you’ll get a good job are slim.
Just to be very clear: I’m not anti-university, I have my first degree and I’m glad. I love the fact that I’m privileged to have my first degree and I’m benefiting from it.
But actively looking for ways to develop yourself during and after your first degree is what’s MOST IMPORTANT.
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If you’ve not attended a tertiary institution for your first degree (and you want to), go ahead. Just have it at the back of your mind that it’s not the paper you can tender that matters most, it’s the skills and practicable knowledge you can offer.
Either you’re schooled, being schooled, or out of school, you need to deeply involve yourself in things that you really care about and when you do, you’ll start gaining real, experiential knowledge.
7 Things to Do During & After Your First Degree
When you do this 7 things, the type of knowledge that you can’t get in a classroom is what you’ll get. And this knowledge is the sort of “raw material” that you can turn into an asset (a skill or product) that can eventually be sold.
Start a business
There are more than enough reasons to start a business. The number one thing starting a business will teach you is that failure is inevitable, and once you can get over that, you’ll have a much better chance at succeeding the next time.
Also Read: 6 Important things to do when you fail
I started a business back in school too (my penultimate year) and my first business and life lesson? “NEVER start a business with debts” and I Learned how to get out of debts.
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Ready to get started but don’t know how? Here are 42 small business ideas that any aspiring entrepreneur will absolutely love.
Sometimes I feel like paying my tuition is like paying for exposure. But now, I’m convinced that exposure matter a lot.
Traveling will give you an entirely new perspective and exposure to new cultures. When you do you’ll be informed and it gives you something interesting to talk about with other people.
Visiting places and making new friends with people you otherwise wouldn’t have met can change your life. Have you thought about having a friend in every continent of the world?
Learn Soft Skills
There are hard skills and soft skills. According to Wikipedia, Soft skills are a combination personal attributes that enable someone to interact effectively and harmoniously with other people.
So important because it is needed in whatever career you choose either as an employee or a business owner. These are skills that helps you communicate and interact effectively with other people.
Here are few soft skills you should learn: Effective communication, Listening skills, leadership skills, creative thinking, decision making, confidence, public speaking, problem solving, time management and many more
You can join a club and see it a training ground to develop these skills.
Find a cause that you really care about and give back in the biggest way possible. But don’t just dabble….treat it like a job. Give everything you have. Be a good human for no reason. It feels great and you’ll also learn a lot about yourself.
Learn a new language
REALLY learn one. Work on becoming fluent, start to enjoy pieces of the culture. While the reasons for learning a new language can be different, the importance is universal.
It could be Chinese, Spanish, Hausa, etc. Many people earn a living not from what they studied for their first degree but from learning a new language.
Learning a new language stimulates your mind and fascinates your curiosity. It can get you an edge over other employees in your job and also you can reach more customers since you now know how to communicate with them
Reading is like a journey with a purpose. When you read books your mind will broaden and it will give room for ideas to flow in. You can decide to read one or two books in a month.
Discover your passion
Painting, music, dance, sculpture, comedy, sports. Find your passion, something that really speaks to you and do it every single day — create something beautiful that you’re proud of.
When you commit yourself to mastering the craft, you can apprentice with someone you consider a “master.” Immerse yourself in it, then build a business around it.
When you take up the challenge and do these 7 things, you’ll come to understand yourself more and you’ll realize that you’re capable of coming up with an idea and seeing it through to the end.
That said…no matter where you are right now, you MUST start the process building your own self and impacting your own life.
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