Another way to approach life after school other than go job hunting

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“I’m a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.” – Thomas Jefferson

Traditionally, it’s the right thing to get on the street and start searching for a job in desperation once out of school or after NYSC. After all that seems to be why we go to school; to get a high-paying job. Really, if we think the only reason we go to school is to get a job once we graduate, we are likely to get to that point where we ask the startling question, ‘what is the point?’ If you are already feeling this way, you are not alone. If you don’t, well you are not alone either. From time to time, we’ll need to evaluate our current position and examine where it’s pointing to.

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Acquiring higher education in the ideal sense isn’t meant to create victims of circumstance but intelligent who learn to take control of their lives in whatever circumstance that come their way. Education is meant to arouse a sense of curiosity but it rather seems to render most of its participants confined into an enveloped concept of a ready-made world where you simply plug-in and take what you think you ‘deserve’; which breads the mindset that there is nothing else to do after school other than get a job. But the reality is that the society doesn’t owe you a job because you went to school. The government, the community doesn’t owe you a position because you studied and had the best universities degree. Often times you read comments from or about Nigerians in Diaspora like; “There are no jobs over there. FG should create jobs so these people who are willing can come down and invest their knowledge back home.”

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Well since the proverbial jobs isn’t forthcoming from our big brothers, isn’t it a better reason and opportunity to come down with the ideas and experiences gathered from the developed countries and start implementing them back home?

We can complain that rose bushes have thorns, or we can rejoice that thorn bushes have roses. – Abraham Lincoln

In an article shared by a blogger, Bobby Udoh on, “Entitlement mindset: A Hindrance to Nation-Building” the writer attributes the attitude of most Nigerians towards success as a drawback from national development. He referred these attitudes as;

The destination mindset; where you assume life is a destination rather than a journey; the ‘I have arrived’ attitude. We assume once you have a ‘good’ high paying job, you have made it. Get married to a rich family, you have arrived. Get favored by someone influential and your heaven has come.

“Interestingly, those who have yet to arrive (the majority of Nigerians) are focused and committed to do whatever is necessary to receive the societal proclamation- you have arrived”

Obviously this is why we often hear things like, “this rich people are never satisfied with money”. This school of thought is bread on the destination mindset which gives the impression that once one have arrived (accumulated a ship load of wealth), you simple take a bow, go on retirement and live a luxury life till you breath your last. While it is undeniable that there are greedy rich people in the society, most times the rich who create their wealth out of genuine service don’t see their fortune as a destination attained rather more opportunity to serve their society. The effect of their cause keeps increasing their wealth.

The entitlement mindset; where you assume the society and government owe you a job and a good life. So feel abused and marginalized when things don’t turnout as ideally expected. Ironically, we end up producing these people with similar mindset as our government officials, which explains why you find virtually everyone, including these government officials busy fighting for their ‘rights’ (entitlement).

“On the other hand, nation-builders do not feel entitled to anything but rather feel they owe God their lives and society their service. As a result, they become responsible for themselves and for the nation, carry a confident yet humble and servant attitude and persistently undertake nation-building efforts.”

If you are still wondering what more can be done other than job hunting after graduation and NYSC, here are some pointers. Obviously, this is not a one- size fits all way to go.

  1. 1.       Skill acquisition

There is absolutely nothing wrong with searching for a job or gaining an employment once after school. But the real question that is often hard to admit is, ‘’do I really deserve a ‘good’ job?” “Are you a potential value to an employer in your desired field?” The entitlement mindset will assume you deserve a ‘good’ job just like everyone else but that is not true in reality. Employers are not looking for young people to get off the class of unemployment rather they are looking for team members to build their businesses with.

Ask this, “what skills will I develop to make me an asset to an employer?”What skill can make me better at building my own business?” Identify the right place and method to acquire the skill you desire and start learning something new.

  1. 2.       Self Education

If you rely only on academic knowledge, you will hardly get ahead in achieving your goal. The real education happens outside school. You should be willing to take steps that will create great experiences for you. Be on the lookout for ‘useful’ seminars, workshops, events, short courses where you can learn new.

  1. 3.       Internship not job

Whether we Like it or not, only a few graduates will be lucky enough to get a well paid job in few months or years after school. Most others in years from now will still be looking for just any job. The productive ones would have developed their skills in new areas or have their own businesses. While you have the time, rather than take the usual applicant position, you can take the position of an intern-seeking graduate in the field of your interest. For instance, if you want to get into construction, Building contractors are often looking for interns to work with. Most of them will hardly employ you as a fulltime employee. But if you show you have interest in the field and want to learn under them as an apprentice or trainee, they are more likely to accept you. In such cases, be ready to be well under-paid. However you will gain experiences, exposure and credibility over time that will be more valuable to you. I can tell about this because I have been in this position and seen it work. I can’t be 100% sure about other fields but it’s likely to work the same way.

  1. 4.       Discover if you are on the right career path or need a change of career

Be sure you put your feet in the right place, then stand firm. – Abraham Lincoln

The process of discovery may involve working on your field for some time to see if you are really interesting in making a life out of it but not necessarily. If you are contemplating entrepreneurship and starting your own business, you don’t necessarily need to first get a job, get bored and decide to quit. You can make the decision from the early start whether or not you want a job. Once you are sure you are on the right part, then give it everything you have.

Most times the best road to travel is not the broad street.

DO you have a particular experience of deliberately going without a job? How has it turned out so far? We can learn from your experience. Share with us on comment below. Or write Us a guest post

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