The Advice For Graduating College Students Floored Me
I sat around a banquet table with my daughter who is graduating from university on Saturday. The occasion for the dinner reception was to recognize and award stoles to the “study abroad program” students. My daughter studied in Spain and was one of the students recognized.
No doubt, her dad and I were very proud of her. We were beaming with pride and wishing, hoping, praying for her…to have a beautiful, purpose filled life. She is following her dreams of training dolphins which requires a psychology degree. She’s also passionate about family counseling so either way, she wins with this degree.
After all the students were recognized, the final speaker took his place at the podium and quite frankly, I couldn’t believe some of the things he said.
The First Comment that took me back..
This question was asked coming from this individual who is IN the rat race and doesn’t even realize it, asks…
“Now that you’re graduating, what are you going to do to stay OUT of the rat race in your employment?”
I tried not to respond with a knee jerk reaction but I wanted to stand up and say, “What? Are you kidding me? Employment IS the rat race!”
This man is IN the rat race and doesn’t even see it that way!
He’s working for someone else.
He’s following the rules and guidelines of the university.
He’s trading time for dollars.
His income is capped.
He shows up to do a job when and where he’s told.
He’s told what to wear.
He gets sick days and vacation days and it’s on the approval of someone over him.
He can be fired.
He can be laid off.
He punches a clock.
Yet, he apparently didn’t see that as the rat race himself. He defined not being in the rat race to doing that which you really want to do. (IN A JOB SETTING!)
He said to the students something along these lines:
“Probably none of you want to get stuck in the rat race so make sure you are doing what you want to do and if there’s no path to that which you want, you’ve got to make your own.”
What floored me what in analogy to not being in the rat race to that of doing what you love…. FOR A BOSS.
The rat race is the rat race no matter HOW you package it up or what type of beautiful bow you put on top.
When you work for someone else, here’s the rules
1) Your income is capped
2) You live your days according to your work schedule
3) You vacation when you’re told to
4) You take sick days when you’re given permission to
5) You CAN be replaced, I don’t care how much you love your job or your boss loves you.
6) The life you live … from the food on your table, the education and experiences for your children, your retirement account, the gifts exchanged at holidays, the travel opportunities you have, the clothes you wear, the home you live in, the car you drive, the medical services you have options for, are ALL set inside the RAT RACE.
I don’t care if you’re the janitor or the CEO of the corporation, if you’re inside this pyramid, you are in the rat race.
FREEDOM is inside entrepreneurship.
These students have been fully educated and trained for employees. Ready to face their new reality.
And speaking of being trained now to be good employees, here’s the next ‘jaw dropping’ statement I heard…
Look To Overseas For Careers
The recommendation was to seek careers and jobs overseas as an option because the job market is much better than those here in the US.
Ask me, as a parent, if that’s the advice I want given to my daughter? Do I want her to up and move to China which was one of the recommended countries?
If That Doesn’t Work
If that wasn’t enough, the students were told that if they had a difficult time finding a job in the field they just trained and studied for, to call the university office and they can assist them in putting together a resume to help them find something else.
Here’s the truth my friends.
Parents are sending their kids to college following the old school methodology of
1) go to college
2) start your life out with 6 figure debt
3) get a job that will take you 40 years to pay your tuition back
4) retire on social security.
Well, guess what? That doesn’t work anymore.
It hasn’t worked for an entire generation or two now.
If your student’s dream is to train dolphins for example, then they need an education to do that. But then, show them how they can become the trainer of trainers, start side businesses, author books, invest their income into income producing streams, etc. Help them think outside the box of what’s possible for them. Show them how to soar!
If your student’s dream is to be an accountant, doctor, lawyer, counselor.. take that one step further and expose them to entrepreneurship where they discover how to have their OWN practices.
If your student’s dream is to be creative in graphics, design, etc, take that one step further and expose them to opening their own studio.
What I saw was…
“Get the job.”
And that seemed to be “delightful” to the speakers.
I didn’t hear a word, an inspiration, a thought, a subliminal message that suggests at all, to take your education and turn it into an entrepreneurial endeavor.
My Take Away?
Here’s what I heard in a 30 second nutshell.
“Students… now that you’ve spent $80K on your education, you probably won’t find a job that you’ve been trained for. So here’s two options…
1) Move overseas and try and find work there.
2) Call our office and we’ll help you put a resume together and figure out what else you may enjoy doing.”
While I was proud of my daughter for her accomplishments, my heart was heavy for the advice that was bestowed on these kids who have NO CLUE what’s about to become their reality.
Most will go out and not find their career path, but rather go work as a cashier somewhere, never using what they trained for, leaving their hopes and dreams to the minimum wage, always dispensible, never paid their worth, develop self-esteem issues and beliefs about themselves based on the amount of their paycheck.
It makes me sick. It makes me sad.
If you’re reading this, my guess is you’re in the rat race and are saying to yourself “yep, yep, yep, that about sums it up.”
A New Generation Is Skipping The Employee Model
For many college kids or those just graduating from high school and looking around at the power of the internet, there’s another option besides working for the boss.
There’s a lot of young adults sick with fear about the reality ahead of them.
They are discovering how to make money using social media selling products of all kinds.
And the more advanced we become with easy delivery of products around the world and secure online ordering, there’s more and more opportunity for them to not go into debt with college loans and get to a healthy 6 figure income in just a year or two. This generation loves to travel and they know how to be mobile while working their internet business.
So what are YOUR options?
Many of my readers are way past college dwelling days, although that’s still one option… or is it really?
Do you really want to go back to college, incure MORE debt and get another insecure, underpaying job all while paying back your tuition?
Okay, so I’m guessing that NOT an option
Many of my readers have 20-30-40-50-60+ years of life experiences beyond high school graduation and quite frankly, are no further ahead today than when they were back in their college days.
The solution is taking your passions and turning them into entrepreneurial endeavors.
Here’s how to do that.
1) What are your passions, interests and strengths that you can share with the world?
2) Blog about those things. Make videos about those things.
3) Create products or sell products of others that relate to those passions. Start a home based business offering products you love.
4) Share your blog, your videos, your experiences, your passions with a call to action for people who are interested to make a purchase and/or join your home based business with you.
My passion was to free myself from the terrible hours and stress of many years in the real estate industry working for buyers and sellers.
I wanted to free myself from demands, schedules, suits, panty hose and high heels.
I wanted to free myself to get the sleep and rest my body desired. I wanted to free myself from from alarm clocks.
Once I did that, I wanted to share what I did to free myself so others can free themselves. THIS IS THE PASSION I’M SHARING WITH THE WORLD
I’ve been free since 2007 and have never looked back.
It’s work. You need to get the knowledge and skills to do that. But oh my goodness, if you want the life of freedom to live your days how you choose while money is coming in, my friends… it’s so worth it.
The question is whether you want it bad enough to go after it and roll up your sleeves, get the education and will apply what you learn. The other option is to keep the status quo and struggle through your life.
I believe that it’s not too early or too late for you to start your entrepreneurial journey if you want to. I believe in you. If you have a dream to start your own home based or brick and mortar business, be about it. Life is short and there’s lots of opportunity waiting for you.
PS: If you are interested in starting a home based business, contact me and I’ll share with you what I’m up to. It may be a fit for you.
photo of graduate at top of page courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net