10 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Started My First Real Job


I love lists. Over the past couple weeks I have been reminiscing a lot. I thought it would be a fun exercise to write a few “10 Things I Wish I Knew Before…” over the next week or so. Some will be serious, some will be silly.

I have a handful of friends that are starting their first big jobs outside of college! I’ve been thinking a lot about job things and wanted to start my lists here.

1. Even though it’s completely stereotypical – you will soon have a case of the Mondays and be cheering for Friday. Even on great weeks at work, it’s still glorious when the weekend rolls around.

2. There will be times you feel stuck in between being a kid and an adult. That’s okay. Don’t feel like you have to pretend to be old and mature and know what the heck you’re doing. It will come.

3. Friendships at work are important. It can be harder to make friends during your work day since you have work responsibilities you need to do too! It takes time. Be intentional. Ask people to go out for lunch or get coffee. It’s worth it.

4. There will be very good days and there will be very bad days. Stress often comes with the job. Don’t be shocked when it comes. Do what you can and rise above it.

5. You need to be the master of your time. Don’t be a yes man all the time… because you’re the only one who will suffer. Work very hard when you’re working. But don’t stay late every day or do triple the work than you’re hired to do. [Read my rest series if you need a little reminder on this!!]

6. Be a learner. Learn everything you can about your job. Take extra trainings, read books and learn about working with people and in an organization. Learn about the people you work with and work for.

7. Ask people who have been there a while for survival tips. There’s no need to re-invent the wheel. I feel like I learned this the hard way. If there’s a fabulous organizational tool, try it. If there’s a delicate way of handling people or dealing with issues, find out!

8. Perfect a morning routine. A good morning will give you a great start to your day. It took me way too long of rolling out of bed in a panic and eating my breakfast in the car to realize this. My favorite morning? Waking up in enough time to leisurely get ready, read and eat breakfast sitting at my dining room table. Ahhh.

9. You know those friends you hope to make? You will. It just takes time. You will get to know some amazing people who make even the worst work days so much better.

10. You may love your job or you may not. If you’re lucky like me, you’ll love it and stay there over 5 years. But if you don’t, that’s okay. Be patient. Trust the process… and make the most of it!



About jackielopina

Follower of Jesus, Pastor's Wife, Cookie Baker.
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