Archive | July, 2008

How life Changes after College

31 Jul

This was sent to a friend by a co-worked and forwarded to me. It is funny, but at the same time symbolic because its crazy to think how much your lifestyle and the things you believe in can change in such a short amount of time. Remember you are growing up and changing but still so young and this is the time of our life where we are allowed to have fun, party and be selfish, because someday it will all be different and you don’t want to look back with any regrets. 

You don’t know what time Taco Bell closes anymore.

Your potted plants stay alive.

Shacking in a twin-sized bed seems absurd.

You keep more food than beer in the fridge.

You have to pay your own credit card bill.

You haven’t seen a soap opera in over a year.

8:00 a.m. is not early.

You have to file your own taxes.

You hear your favorite song on the elevator at work.

You’re not carded anymore.

You carry an umbrella.

Your friends marry and divorce instead of hook-up and break-up.

You start watching the Weather Channel.

Jeans and baseball caps aren’t staples in your wardrobe.

You can no longer take shots, and smoking gives you a sinus attack.

You go from 130 days of vacation time to 7.

You go to parties that the police don’t raid.

Adults feel comfortable telling jokes about sex in front of you.

Your car insurance goes down, except when you move to Jersey.

You refer to college students as kids.

You drink wine, scotch and martinis instead of beer, bourbon, and rum. Well, some of us still drink rum.

You feed your dog Science Diet instead of Taco Bell.

You’re waking up at 6 a.m. instead of going to bed.

College sweatshirts are ‘casual’ instead of dress up.

Sleeping on the couch is a no-no.

Naps are no longer available between noon and 6 p.m.

Dinner and a movie — the whole date instead of the beginning of one.

You get your news from sources other than USA Today, ESPN Sportscenter, and MTV News.


Wine appreciation expands beyond Boone’s and Mad Dog.

You actually eat breakfast foods at breakfast time.

Grocery lists actually contain relatively healthy food.

When drinking, you say at least once per night, “I just can’t put it down like I used to.”

Golf is beginning to seem a lot less silly.

You decide your parents weren’t as dumb as you thought!

Remember “Growing up is after all only the understanding that one’s unique and incredible experience is what everyone shares.”
— Doris Lessing


Getting used to the post- college early wakeup

31 Jul

The sudden switch from college to the real world can be pretty difficult particularly for the inevitable change in sleep patterns. Unless you conveniently live next door to work or drive an RV it may be a little hard to take the naps you so loved during college. And you’ll also find that sleeping until noon and partying all night will get you nothing more than a very unproductive day and pink slip. Here’s some tips to avoid the groggy mornings and trade in your 12-3 for a 9-5 schedule:

1. Move your alarm clock so you have to get out of bed to get it: For most of us millennials our cellphones/Alarm clocks have become our new security blankets, snuggled next to our pillow for convenient texting and late night emailing. However moving our cell phone or old fashioned alarm clock far from our bed forces us out of bed instead of sleepily muffling the sounds with our pillow. 

2. Go to Bed Earlier: Lets be honest after 10pm we aren’t really doing anything that productive. We are far too tired to do work or exercise consuming our time with the latest episode of Project Runway or a snack. Instead, hit the sack an hour earlier and read a book. You’ll find yourself falling asleep earlier and waking up earlier.

3. Gradually set your alarm to wake up earlier: If you are like me and press your snooze button 5 times until you wake up in a panic with 10 minutes to get dressed and race to work, chances are you aren’t arriving at work alert and refreshed. Each night set your alarm to 15 minutes earlier until you are waking up an hour or two before work which gives you time to eat, exercise and relax. 

4. Exercise in the morning: We all have grandiose plans for workouts after work, but the inevitable usually occurs: you come home late and are so tired you can’t imagine hitting the elliptical at the gym or taking a run. If you wake up early and exercise you get it over with, have more energy for the day and are in a better mood (legally blond anyone? “Exercise releases endorphins, endorphins make people happy and..” Well you get the point) 

5. Eat a balanced breakfast: If you are late for work and grab a orange juice and scone, you might have energy for awhile, but in no time the sugars will make you crash and be extremely tired. To avoid this (and save money from eating out) sit down and have a balanced meal of protein, complex carbs and fats before work (think peanut butter toast, and an egg or cottage cheese). This allows blood sugar to rise gradually over several hours and keeps it from dropping suddenly.

6. Establish a routine: We are creatures of habit, and the more often we do things the more we get used to them. It may seem impossible right now to wake up early, exercise, eat breakfast and shower,but eventually you will get used to it. Write down the night before your schedule for the morning and make it a point to stick with it. After a week or two of doing it, (and realizing how much you love it) it will come naturally. It just takes a couple of times dragging yourself out of bed to get there.

Treating and Preventing the Dreaded Work Hangover

11 Jul

In college, pretty much every night was a celebration. There was Taco Tuesdays, Wacky Wednesdays, Thursday college specials Downtown, and keggers on the weekends (can’t exclude Sunday Fun-day). Now that you are thrown into the real world and have 9-5 jobs it’s hard to turn off this party mentality. Especially if you move to a new city and are going out to meet new people and take your mind off of work and how much you miss college. 

Drinking during the weekdays may seem doable for you- that is until you experience your first hangover at work. You meet some new people for cocktails at a fun new restaurant at a city and start with a nice glass of wine. However the wine decides it wants another glass of wine.. and then the two gang up and decide they want a cocktail.. and the next day you wake up very confused with a tattooed arm from the bar stamps, a scratchy voice from singing Journey, and an episode of Fragile Rock taking place in your head. A year or two ago you would have just skipped class, but workdays are like finals- if you miss it you fail the class, (aka your fired). If you do make it,  your concentration, performance and communication with clients and coworkers inevitably suffers. Here’s some tips we’ve learned here at the Mad Grad that while not scientifically proven, allows you to have a geat time at Trivia night while avoiding being demoted to the basement with Milton the next day:

Limit yourself to one drink an hour. Seriously. Alcohol tends to get bossy after a couple of drinks, so don’t let it takeover. Instead of focusing on the drink, focus on conversing with friends and take small sips.

Hit up the happy hours: Whoever invented these must have experienced a hangover at work and realized if they start drinking earlier than they do on a weekend, they can go home earlier and be more rested for work the next day. (They also must have been living on an entry-level salary and found tremendous joy in 2 dollar specials)

Stay hydrated: If you feel yourself getting a little drunk, have some water. Have water before you go to sleep, and the next day when you wake up. It might sound excessive but it will save you from a monster headache the next day. 

Eat Something: We all know what happens when you skip dinner and race to the bars to meet a friend: you feel like a 80 pound girl, getting wasted after 2 drinks. Before drinking have carbs, fats or sugars which slow the absorption of alcohol. 

I’m hungover, now what?: If you are still drunk, do not go into the office. Take the sick day. If you go in, have a huge glass of orange juice (vitamin C helps speed up the metabolism of alcohol), a big breakfast with protein and carbohydrates, drink water like its in your job description, have a multi vitamin (with B vitamins), have a banana, and avoid coffee which further dehydrates you. If you by some miracle wake up in time to shower, high five your alarm clock, as this will wake you up and wash away the lingering alcohol and smoke smell. If you don’t have time for this, wash your face with cold water and use some cover up under your eyes. In this scenario honesty is not the best policy- bosses have a lot more sympathy for pneumonia, flu and food poisoning than they do for too much Jack Daniels. Make yourself look as great on the outside as possible and if all else fails.. blame it on last night’s sushi dinner.

When Choosing a job… Follow your Instincts!

7 Jul

How many of you have heard something like this before:

“You’re so good with children, you should be a teacher!”

“I can really see you going into sales, you are just so outgoing!”

The truth? Just because you love children, doesn’t mean you want to pursue a career as a teacher, and there’s more to sales than having an outgoing personality. As we graduate and face so much uncertainty and opportunity we are told to take advice from as many people as possible. We are like two year olds again.. sponges absorbing information from people eager to impart their wisdom and life experiences on us (guilty) However, when is it okay to throw the bottle.. get up and walk on our own??

Advice is great to an extent- it is always helpful to hear from friends, family members and others who have been where we have and know what it’s like to struggle with finances, jobs and housing. However, when it comes to your career- only YOU know what is best for you. If friends and family see you in a career that is making you outwardly stressed, sick and a mess then it is okay for them to step in and suggest a career change. In the end, you are the one that will be on the computer all day, in front of the classroom, speaking to clients, traveling to meetings, or writing your column. So when it comes down to deciding what you want to do, sit down by yourself and instead of thinking what others want you to do or what looks good on paper, think what you would absolutely LOVE to do at work everyday. 

As Dr Seuss put it… “YOU have brains in your head. YOU have feet in your shoes. YOU can steer yourself in any direction YOU choose!”

The Truth and Nothing but the Truth about Job Services

7 Jul

  Before I graduated college I had no real knowledge about what a temp agency was, but now that I have been to almost every one in  the city of San Francisco, I consider myself somewhat of an expert. These can be great resources when trying to find a job, but there are some important things you should  know.

Temp and Job agencies work with companies who usually pay them commission to fill job openings within their companies and so they will advertise the jobs through them and then you can come in and they will evaluate you and your resume for the positions that they are trying to fill.

There are some key things you must know and consider before going to a temp agency:

Find a good match: Make sure that the place you are going to work with is the right type of angency for you. There are many agencies that deal  specifically with companies and or industries, so make sure that the temp agency you go to works with the field you are trying to get into.

Consider your attire: Even though it is not exactly a formal interview, you still need to dress appropriately considering the person who is trying to get you a job will take you more seriously and be more inclined to help you if you are as professional as can be.

Be Honest: Many Job agencies get commission from getting you a job, but it is very important to be honest with the recruiter, otherwise they will just place you in any job that you are qualified for. Make sure you give them a list of jobs you will absolutely not do, so then they won’t even consider you for those positions.

Here are some places I have been where I had a positive experience and good results:

Smith Hampton & Devlin, LLC Placement Specialists: This company got me an awesome job at a really fun advertising firm, they are very adament about finding you the perfect match even if it means more work for them. You also meet with all 3 owners when you are there so they each can get a feel for you and your goals in case an opportunity comes up they can all reach out to find you the perfect placement.

Innovations: The woman that worked with me here (Anne) was amazing and brutally honest about everything from what I was wearing to how to carry and present myself for the interviews she got me. Although I didn’t end up getting the position that she set me up with I still feel I learned a lot. She was always available and called to check up after each interview.

The Job Shop: This is a much smaller less corporate type agency where you are required to take a lengthy computer test (which is kind of a pain) but then it helps them get a better idea of your computer related ability. The recruiter here really helped me tweak my resume according to the field I was trying to get into, and this actually made a huge difference of the amount of interviews I got after that.

Most importantly remember to keep an open mind, getting a job you really want could take a lifetime, but by reaching out to experts who are connected and can offer advice and help is always a good idea!