Graduating from the University of Southern California, I would think that my education, my four years of learning and life lessons, and everything in between had prepared me. I was ready for the real world. I was ready to be an adult, get a real job, and put everything I had learned to the test. Yet, what I hadn’t prepared for was the feeling of not knowing. After college, I expected to have everything together, for I was confident that I knew enough to get me exactly where I needed to be without question.
After constant searching, I found a job I was excited for, accepted the position, and then started right away at Hawke Media. But after my first day, I was completely overwhelmed. I knew about design; I knew everything in the textbook about marketing. Digital media, though, not so much. However, if I have learned anything in the past two months, it is that one, learning never ends and learning new things is okay, and two, being overwhelmed is also completely acceptable, even as said “adult.”
In this new position of knowing nothing but at the same time knowing something, I have never been more intrigued, supported, or inspired by a group of people and the role I play in the company. Being overwhelmed by new things and new problems is a part of life. It forces you to learn quickly and be smart. It forces you to read more, to search broad, and aim higher. And after two months, I have not only accepted this fear of the unknown but also used it to my advantage.
I now am more comfortable with designing email wireframing in comparison to old design projects such as rebranding or logo typing. I now understand the creative aspects of Facebook advertisement where before all ads were the same and would achieve the same outcome, or so I thought. I can debug Shopify back-wire coding that before made no sense but now is just a simple as the HTML I knew. I have learned so much than I thought I would ever need to know but as I said before, learning never ends.
If I could say anything to new graduates, it would be this: Be overwhelmed. Be overwhelmed and stressed but use that to learn. Use it to put your best foot forward and take challenges with a running head start. And eventually, you will not only find out more than you ever knew (especially in areas you knew nothing about), but you will be thankful for the new experiences.
So I leave everyone with this: Be proactive. Be smart. Think big and be overwhelmed. It’ll all work out in the end. Remember, learning never ends!