Ian Ortega, a Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineer wrote some advice for Ugandan graduates on his Facebook Page. We found it extremely touching and inspirational that we had no option but to re-share it here. If it speaks to you, then share this story afterwards:
Dear Fresh Graduates; congratulations
I am a little late. But hey, it’s not a race as such. You are probably going to hear or have already heard a lot of advice. The truth is, no one has it all figured out. You will have to make up the pieces together as you go long. There is really no blue print.
Your friends are about to become distant. As they each follow their career paths, the distance will only grow longer until you finally realize that you really came into this world alone.
So then, that means; you must define what success means to you. If success means having a job, go out and look for one. If it means being your own boss, go out start your business. If it means settling down and being a good modern housewife. Go do that. As long as you are happy, and as long as its your definition of success, let no body try to tell you otherwise.
You’ve spent the last part of your life trying to correct your mistakes. Please stop already. Everyone is already focusing on your weaknesses. Let them do that work for you. Go focus on your strengths. Play by your strengths. If your strength is that of a uber driver, please go sign up as one.
You will soon realize that your degree doesn’t define you. In fact no one cares whether you are an engineer, a lawyer or an economist. So celebrate your achievement for now, but no one really cares except your parents who are happy they now have one less expense to cater for. That said, you should realize that you are not really special beyond your graduation party. Sorry to burst your bubbles.
Life will sometimes be sweet. Sometimes it will be painful. There will be some losses. Embrace it all. It is all life.
Speaking of intelligence. Life is very political. You are going to need emotional intelligence more than you thought you did. You will soon realize that sometimes the people who get ahead at work are not those who work the hardest but those who are seen to be working the hardest. Make your results visual. On that note, be your biggest fan, blow your Trumpet a little and be a little Donald Trump. Speak up, don’t step on many toes, break a little rules and always fall back to your emotional intelligence. Corporate politics exists, be ready to play it.
Always be learning, be growing, be improving. Cut down your ego. Don’t be afraid to ask someone to teach you something you don’t know.
Always show up. Life is random, much of life is about showing up. May be your future business partner is at that boring party you have been invited to. Say more Yes(es) but also say more No(s).
Take more risks, take more chances. No one is really judging you. If you feel like a rolex, go out, buy one. Remember, whatever makes you happy, go do that. Action, action, action. Always be in action executing on something.
If you must spend a lot of money, spend it on your bed and mattress. You will need a safe place for you to cool your thoughts once in a while.
Don’t fake a life. Be patient. Don’t feel bad if your friend gets a job before you do. Relax. Keep taking more chances. If you make money. It is up to you to do anything you want with it. If you want a car, buy one. If you want to save it, do so.
Most of you, you are going to work on things that are totally unrelated to what you study. All that matters at the end of the day is that you can pay your own bills. Avoid cliques at work. Don’t take sides. Don’t judge. Don’t gossip.
Spice up your MS Word skills. They will come in handy. Keep a smile on your face. Be the guy who can operate the printer with ease. The guy who can pull off those MS excel tricks. It will earn you respect quickly.
Go download the QUORA app. And add on the youtube App. You will be amazed at how much you learn from these everyday. If your boss gives you a hard assignment, never tell him you can’t do it. Google exists to teach you. Go spend that night awake and deliver on that project. That’s how your earn his or her respect. Don’t forget it is also your job to make your boss look good.
Make some money. Go out with friends. Take some Black bell. Dance a little. Pray if you feel like.
Above all, feel free not to follow any of the tips prescribed here. Everyone is as clueless as you are. The only difference is that everyone acts like they have their shit together. And that’s what they call confidence grad. It will take you places.
That said, you are not really special. You are not the first neither are you the last. And no one cares. It is your life to live. You are born alone, you die alone and are burried alone. So be happy.