9 Things College Doesn’t Teach You but Life Does

(STL.News) Like a child slowly growing and learning is life after graduation.  The child lacks foresight and a knowledge of ‘how’ and ‘why,’ sorely relying on faith.  The college graduate, on the other hand, has a proper glimpse of how life works and has been equipped with enough tools to be successful, yet success is never a guarantee.

Regardless of the good that the time spent in college does, a bubble is also often created over students, many of whom have just left home for the first time.  Post-college graduation shock hits many graduates who realize that life isn’t as idealistic as college makes it out to be.

The college equips us with many intellectual and analytical skills necessary to do professional work.  But there are many other things that life teaches us that are equally, if not more important than these technical skills acquired in college.

Here are nine things that life teaches you but college doesn’t.

  1. The Smaller Your Crowd, the Less Stress You Have to Deal With – “Yes-men” and minions might be a part of your repertoire in college.  Out in the real world, they’ll only be baggage.  Life teaches you who your real friends are and who will stick it out, regardless of what you are going through.
  2. It’s Never Too Early or Late to Do the Things You’ve Always Wanted – College provides a rigid schedule and timelines that make every goal seem like it needs to be accomplished in the next week or month.  In the real world, only your passion and commitment matter, whether you do it next year or in 10 years.
  3. Life Is Too Short to Fret About the Small Things – Still holding on to grudges and bitter feelings of those who wronged you in college?  Life is too short of becoming angry and of seeking revenge on those who did you malice.  Just let it go for the sake of your peace and sanity.
  4. Together Is Always Better Than Alone – The overachiever in you might look down on the prospect of working with others.  Out in the real world, a team, be they present or apart, is always the best way to go if only to learn synergistically and move things faster.
  5. Working Hard and Smart Are Not the Same – This is a lesson well-worth learning as early in life as possible.  Still, most people only learn this after college.  Working smart means knowing the relative importance of each task or move, the ability to multitask and prioritize, and not fretting over small details until core tasks are completed.  The 80-20 rule totally applies here.
  6. Asking for Help Doesn’t Mean You Are Weak – Still on your network, asking for help from people like parents or even asking a friend for a job doesn’t imply weakness.  As a college student struggling with writing an academic paper, requesting help from a write my essay company shows that you are working smart.  Being vulnerable and conceding that you don’t know how to go about something just means that you are a willing learner, which will enthuse on your part all the help you can get.
  7. Your Network Is Your Net Worth – This is another lesson that one needs to learn even before they graduate but yet is often learned too late.  Your network can be anyone, from former teachers, colleagues, college peers, family, and friends.  How many people you can reach out to in times of need, suggestions, or inquiry is one of the most important things to have in your adult life.
  8. Success Is About Relationship and Commitment, Not Necessarily Efficiency – Spending time with friends and family is more important than being work-addicted.  Commitment and passion for the things you love are more important than a fixed routine of a 60-hour workweek in a job that you hate.
  9. Knowledge and Wisdom Are Not the Same – College teaches you intellectual skills and knowledge.  Out in the real world, these will only get you so far, especially when managing complex relationships.  Wisdom equals respect, kindness, empathy, and foresight, which will get you much further than cramming any book will.

Remember, the Journey Is the Destination

Life before and after college are not mutually exclusive. College teaches us important skills such as critical thinking and analytical skills, which come in handy later.  However, beauty, intelligence, and popularity can be fleeting, deceiving many students that they can survive alone in the real world.

The best advice is to make the best of each step and each moment, whether in or out of college.