If it wasn’t for college, there are just some things the world would never know. For example, how else would the human race know that two days of Red Bull, pizza, and finals can turn a normal person into a zombie? College is also the reason why there are so many different uses for Ramen – from food to furniture.
Still, there are a few things that you just can’t learn in college. Despite how much Calculus, World History, or Political Science you study, here is a handful of items that you’ll need to learn on your own if you want to be successful in your future career.
Time Management Skills
In college, you can get away with procrastinating important papers until the day they’re due, especially if you’re willing to stay up all night in order to finish. In the real world, due dates often mean the difference between having a job and keeping them. In order to be successful, you’ll need to learn how to complete projects over time and ahead of schedule.
As a college student, if your roommate does something you don’t like, you can always just slam the door in his face or steal all his cereal as retribution. You are not encouraged to negotiate with professors as it won't help you to get a better grade anyway. In college you are usually limited by the rules and policy, told what to do and left with minimum freedom. In the real world successful people do negotiate. You’ll need to learn how to compromise and negotiate if you want to get ahead in your career path, defend your ideas and expect results from co workers.
While some college professors try to teach teamwork, it usually ends up just being an exercise to see which one of your team members is the biggest overachiever. In the real world, you can’t afford to sit back and let someone else do your work for you. You must learn how to actually do your part in order to make your entire work team successful.
College students are notorious for making plans or promises and then just not showing up. This might be okay if you’re talking about participating in a beer crawl, but it may just get you fired if you try it at work. It is vital to learn how to make a commitment and then always follow through. It will help you get ahead in your career and make you more trustworthy in your personal life.
It’s really easy to pay bills when you have unlimited access to your dad’s credit cards. Unfortunately, that blissful period where your family (or your loans) pays for your daily Wendy’s injections doesn’t last forever. Learn how to budget your money so that you can meet your needs in addition to paying your bills and saving something for the future.
You can be friends with whoever you want. If someone annoys you in a class, you don’t have to talk to them. Simple as that. Unfortunately, the real world is much different. You often have to work with, play with, and live with people who you just don’t like very much. It’s important to learn how to tolerate others’ differences in order to accomplish your goals. And, that means, accepting them without racist, sexist, or intolerant language and actions.
No matter how many courses you take, no one can teach you how to love learning. People who place importance on learning and growing are happier and more successful in their lives. If you are just going to school to check off the box, “I earned a degree,” you may not find that your degree does much for you except fill up space on your wall.
Although college can help you explore new ideas, it can’t teach you one of the most important secrets of the universe – great people are not afraid to take risks. From Steve Jobs to those guys at College Humor, people who become great after college are the ones who don’t stay within the norms of society. Don’t be afraid to take risks that could potentially make you great. Failure doesn’t make you a loser. Not trying does.
It’s possible to get through college without being organized, but it’s not the badge of honour you think it is. Instead of seeing organization as something only nerds do, start to work out a system of your own now. Not only will it help you in your classes, but it will give you a great start on mastering the intricacies and scheduling of the real world.