I love school. I can genuinely say that I have loved my education and yes, there have been moments where I want to smash my computer screen (and two times I did actually smash my computer screen... not on purpose though, OK? Not pulling an Andy Bernard yet). But overall, my schooling has brought me my best friends and treasured experiences. Because of this, the thought of graduating this year is daunting. I can't imagine not living with my roommates anymore (we are so disgustingly obsessed with each other that we got matching tattoos of the name of the street we live on) or having to go to school, do homework, go to sleep, and repeat routine.
In addition to a fear of letting go of this chapter of my life, I'm not quite sure I'm ready to start the next one. I'm currently planning on interning for the summer and then meandering through Europe for a few months, which I am absolutely stoked about. However, it doesn't give me as much confidence about my place in the real world as having a big girl job lined up and ready to go, like many of peers seem to have.
Basically, I don't really know what I'm doing. For the first time in my life, I don't have a step-by-step plan of what happens next. And while I have confidence I will figure it out sooner than later, sometimes it feels a heck of a lot better to know I'm not the only one struggling with the transition of leaving my collegiate life behind. One way I've coped with this is by finding music that expresses similar anxieties and/or encouragement.
Here's a compilation of my go-to songs when I'm feeling a little stressed about what comes next:
1. "Sleep Deprived" - LEON.
2. "NOW" - Grace Mitchell.
AKA what I need to focus on, rather than my lack of a 10-year plan.
3. "Don't Make Me Over" - Dionne Warwick.
It's timeless and relatable. Ms. Warwick croons the advice we all need as we enter the real world. Can't let the anxieties or job prospects change who we really are.
4. "Puzzle Pieces" - Saint Motel.
They all come together in the end, right?
5. "Good As Hell" - Lizzo.
The ultimate hype woman song. Always makes me feel better.
6. "With a Little Help From My Friends" - The Beatles.
Pretty self-explanatory but always relevant. In the end, we will all get through this uneasy stage of post-grad transitions, but it's a lot easier with some good pals who are going through the same thing.
7. "Want You Back" - HAIM.
8. "Every Night You've Got To Save Me" - Mass Gothic.
I mean, the first words are "We wake up tired, we wake up tired again". That about sums up how I wake up every morning without a game plan. Glad someone relates.
9. "Punchin' Bag" - Cage the Elephant
My friends and I have a genre of music that we call our "walking songs". It's when a song comes through your headphones and all of a sudden your slouchy walk turns into a strut. This is the perfect example of such. This song can immediately transform nervousness into empowerment.
10. "Suck It And See" - Arctic Monkeys.
The mantra I repeat over and over to the anxiety-fueled hater in my head.
11. "Where The Hell Are My Friends" - LANY.
LANY perfectly explains my worries about moving away from my college town. I can't imagine being more than a four-minute drive from my friends. Definitely going to have to work on overcoming my FOMO (fear of missing out) about my friends who aren't graduating yet and have a few more quarters of undergrad life together.
12. "When I Get Older" - Wild Party.
Graduation seems like the moment when I have to step into the real, adult world. However, there is still so much to learn and look forward to. This song reminds me that while I am growing up, I'm not grown up yet.
13. "When I'm Away" - The Colourist.
14. "Changing of the Seasons" - Two Door Cinema Club.
15. "L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N." - Noah and the Whale.
Not only does it go on, but it just gets better (at least according to my mom, who is usually right).
While we may feel overwhelmed by what happens next, it's going to happen either way. Might as well put on headphones and dance through it. We good, fam.