Sparkles and Sunshine: What I've Learned From Working A 9-5 Job

What I've Learned From Working A 9-5 Job

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

I can’t believe I graduated from college two years ago. When I graduated, I truly did not know what life would be like afterwards. You always hear silly things like “I can’t adult today” or “being a grown-up sucks,” but no one really tells you why unless you ask. No one tells you about work life, or how hard 
 is to find a job, or what you need to know for paying bills, etc. I am very lucky to have two parents that helped me with whatever they could, but there was still some things that I had to learn on my own.

I’ve learned a lot about credit card debt in the past two years. The problem with credit or debit cards is that spending money is as easy as one quick swipe. Before you know it, you’ve spent everything in your checking account or you’re in the negatives. I’ve had to learn that just because I have a large credit card limit, doesn’t mean I’m supposed to spend it. My mom always says, if you can’t pay it off the next day or within the week, don’t charge it. One good way to use a credit card is for paying bills. You know when your bills come every month. Once they’re due, charge them to your card and then the next day go ahead and pay off your card.

For a short period of time, I wasn’t sure where I was going to be working. I remember getting so upset at myself when my parents told me that I could always come home and stay with them while I was looking for a job. Looking back, I shouldn’t have been so hard on myself. At the time, I felt that I was a failure if I moved back in with my parents. I thought, “I went to college, I got my degree, I did an internship, so why can’t I find a job? I’m definitely qualified…right?” Job searching after college can be hard because so many jobs are looking for candidates with at least two years of experience. I always thought “How can I get that experience if you won’t even hire me?” What I’ve learned since then is to just apply for everything you see. Now, be reasonable and don’t go after the director position right away, because to this day, even with my two years of experience, I am nowhere near ready for that type of position, nor do I know how to be in a position like that. Go after positions that you KNOW you are fully capable of doing. You never know who might hire you!


When it comes to work life, I’ve learned that I’m definitely not on the same schedule anymore. I can’t stay up until 1am, 2am, or even 3am anymore. I’m lucky if I make it until 10pm nowadays! Haha :) I didn’t know that being at a job all day could be so tiring. I’m in marketing, so it’s not like my job requires a ton of physical labor or anything, but when you’re constantly thinking and interacting with your coworkers all day, you get tired! I’ve also learned that you gain weight with a 9-5 job. When I was in college, I was walking all over campus until late hours of the night. As soon as I started my job I was sitting. All day. Every day. At my company, we do get breaks of course, and most people go on walks around the building during their breaks. I especially like to do this because it gives me a break from the computer and it gives me the opportunity to get more steps in that day. I’ve also switched to a standing desk at work. I do sit occasionally just to give myself a break, but I try to stand as much as possible.


Finally, don’t let work take over your life. In the past year, I’ve realized that work isn’t everything. It’s important to be a good employee and do your best, but you have to have a balance. When you take a lunch break, take it! Don’t do work during your lunch. Bring your favorite magazine or book to read, or work on your blog like I do. That time is your time, don’t let work take it from you. Also, when you clock out and leave for the day, unless it’s an emergency, it can wait until tomorrow. The corporation that I work for sells women’s clothing and swimwear. Whenever I was stressed or was worried that I messed something up really bad (when in reality I didn’t), my old boss would say: “Caitlin, remember, it’s only retail.” I was told that two years ago and it really stuck with me because it’s true! I wasn’t put on this earth to only market clothes. I’m here to enjoy my life with my family, friends, my pets and everything else that life has to offer.

What have you learned since graduation? Or, are you about to graduate and are curious about other topics? I’d love to hear about either in the comments below!

Photography: Chantell Cruz

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