By: Anli Durham

May is fast approaching, and many of our AU PRSSA members are preparing for real life/impending doom, also known as graduation. As someone who just graduated this past December, moved to a new city and started my first full-time job, I hope I can provide a bit of advice.

I’m currently preparing myself for my 90-day review at Ketchum, so I thought I’d give you all a 90-day review of the post-grad life. Here are the three main things I wish I knew before jumping head-first into “the real world”:

1. Life is a marathon, not a sprint. Everyone moves at a different pace, and that is okay. I’ve always been the type that works best in a fast-paced environment, but it is important to know your limits so you don’t burn out a year into your first job. Don’t get me wrong, the early years of your career are definitely the time to prove yourself and pay your dues, but make sure you don’t compromise your own health and well-being in the process.

2. Make an effort to meet people outside of your immediate team at work. As a member of a small practice group, I spend most of my days with the same four or five people. And as much as I enjoy working with and learning from them, I try to grab coffee or introduce myself to coworkers from other practices. For someone who spends over eight hours a day on financial clients, it is always fun to hear about the influencer program for our Jameson Irish Whiskey client or the latest social media platform our Digital team is using.

3. Do things that make you happy. Starting out, your hours WILL be long and your salary probably won’t be that great, but it is important to balance your life in the office with fun, stress-relieving activities. For me, I always look forward to finding cute local coffee shops in the city with my friends, seeing a Broadway show or supporting my friend Janet and her new band when they perform at a local bar. These fun activities put me in a good mood, and actually make me a more productive person when I’m in the office.