By Allison Sass
We’ve had a few articles recently about how the quest for happiness in post grad life can be trampled by feelings of depression and anxiety. Something that makes me anxious, and I’m sure loads of other post grads out there, is not receiving constant positive reinforcement. I’m the type of person who likes to get things done quickly and efficiently. I put my whole heart into the projects I’m dedicated to, and I thrive on the rewards that come with them. In college, we are always rewarded, either with praise from our helpful professors, fellow students, or with grades. In the post grad world, things are different.
I’ve learned to cherish every “good job” I receive at this point in my life, because they are few and far between. It’s not that I think I deserve more positive reinforcement, but it did take me a while to adjust that when I complete a task well, it is just seen as a part of my job. In reality, I’m getting paid to complete daily tasks, so why shouldn’t they be done correctly?
Here are a few ways I’ve learned to cope with my need for reinforcement in the post grad world- I hope they can help some of you out there struggling with the same thing
– Vent. I feel bad for my family, friends and boyfriend for having to listen to me talk about my post grad frustrations, but it’s never good to keep emotions bottled up inside. Believe me, I’ve learned this from years of doing just that
– Congratulate yourself. Did you finish an assignment at work before deadline, or just do a really awesome job with it? Take five minutes and give yourself a mental break so you can soak up the fact that you are doing good work.
-Cherish the small things. Remember the day when your parents used to pin your A+ spelling test to the refrigerator? Do the same thing for yourself. Save emails of praise in a special folder in your email account. This way if you’re having an off day, you can simply pull open the folder and remember that you are valued.