A few months ago (which seems like forever ago now) I graduated, moved and started working my first ever job. Since for a lot of students this is something they often worry about, I wanted to talk a bit about my experience after finishing school and starting to work.
First of all: I am aware that not everyone will find a job as fast as I did, and yes I know I am lucky I can live with my boyfriend at his place.
I am dividing this article in three parts: house / work & free time / money
When I graduated, I had been together with my boyfriend for over three years, so it seemed like a good moment for us to start living together. Since my boyfriend already lived in his own apartment, I could easily move in with him. It is a small place and a lot of stuff (both from him and mine) so it takes a bit of getting used to. Also cleaning etc, the roles have to be divided early on, so that you avoid discussions later on. I love living with my boyfriend, because I get to decide on what we eat, when I eat, when I do the things I want to do. But you also have to make sure your house is clean, rent is being paid etc.
Work & free time:
When you go to school, you follow classes, have to study after the hours and take tests, in my studies (event and project management) I also had events to organize and attend. When I started working I felt such a huge relief that I didn't have to spend x hours each day after work studying. When I leave work, I am done for the day and I don't have to do anything anymore until I get back to the office the next day. I finally can go out even during the week (if I'm not too tired) and get to spend every evening I want with my boyfriend. I have a lot more spare time then when I studied, that is clear, but also a lot more responsibility. I can't skip work (like I used to sometimes skip classes) and you have to do a certain amount of work during the day, that you can't take home to finish on another moment.
When you are a student, your parents pay most of your expenses such as food, clothes, they have a house you can stay in and you get pocket money. When I studied I also worked a student job at McDonalds so I could buy more nice things. You have little money worries, and if you happen to be broke, you still have a house to live in and food on the table. Anyhow, ever since I moved and live with my boyfriend, I pay a part of the rent, the food etc. It's not even half of what I earn, and I am able to save up some money every month as well. So financially for me, there are no struggles or issues, but I have no clue what that would be like if you don't have a job or have to pay rent etc on your own (we split everything in half). Financially so far, things are looking bright, and that's something I used to be really worried about.
If you have noticed, I really love working and being done with school. I think it's one of the best things that so far happened to me. Of course if you still want to study, be sure to do so! I personally am excited about life starting now, and it feels like forever ago that I used to live at home.
If you have any questions, be sure to ask, living alone and having to do everything yourself seems scary, but be assured it's actually easier than it appears.