Welcome to the working world! You’re taking a large step towards creating a life that is both valuable and influential. Regardless of whether your first job is an internship, a trainee program, or something else entirely, you’re about to embark on a new and exciting journey. It’s only natural to feel some nerves at this juncture. Although it may not seem like it, your first job will likely not be your last. In recent years, millennials have gained the reputation of ‘the job-hopping generation, switching roles approximately every 1-3 years. Therefore, take this first job for what it is and know that you will learn from the experience, no matter how long you stay working there.
[Related: 5 Things No One Will Tell You at Your First Job]
What You’ll Learn:
Your first job is a very big deal.
Your first job is a big deal because you are being *paid* to be somewhere and get something done. No matter if you worked part-time during school or babysat on weekends, having a job with responsibilities is different. You now have people depending on you! Make sure to take your new role as seriously as it deserves.
Sometimes, the workplace can feel like you’re speaking a different language.
Keep in mind that this varies from workplace to workplace. Your new company probably has different acronyms or phrases that they use regularly. To make sure you’re not missing anything important, kindly ask about these shortened terms as soon as possible.
[Related: Common Phrases to Avoid in the Workplace]
Workplace habits are created for a reason.
When you’re at work, do you all go out to lunch together? Do you take a few minutes to chat around the coffee machine or bring your caffeine fix back to your desk? Make sure to observe the trends of your coworkers. Chances are, they formed them for a reason.
[Related: How To Reduce Office Toxins]
Did you know that there’s something called the Friday Feeling?
The Monday-to-Friday, 9-5 schedule can be grueling for some people, so it’s normal to feel exhausted and antsy by the end of the week. If it’s 3 p.m. on a Friday and you’re already dreaming of the weekend, don’t panic. If you’re feeling overwhelmed at work, take a break — but be mindful that you’ll need to make up the time later. Try taking some deep breaths, going for a walk around the block or office, or grabbing a quick snack.
Every day is a lesson.
It’s easy to be enthusiastic and want to learn everything in the beginning, but it can be difficult to maintain that same level of excitement week after week. Maybe an overrun meeting gets your goat. But instead of the frustration, focus on why it got derailed in the first place. Is there something that could’ve been done beforehand? A chance for you to show up and impress your coworkers? Make sure you make the most out of every experience, both good and bad.
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