You graduated. Now what?

Create a Budget

When you get your first paycheck, you will feel like you’re on top of the world…until you realize you have to pay for rent, utilities, food, internet, insurance and student loan debt, just to name a few. The bills add up quickly and you might feel overwhelmed – besides, that list didn’t include things to do for fun! The first thing you need is a budget. Ideally, establish a budget when you get your first job and choose a place to live based on that budget. You want to be able to live and save without living paycheck to paycheck. A budget can keep you on target, and let you know when you might need to turn down a night out for a night in. There are a variety of free tools available to help you plan, like Mint®, for example.

Join a Group or Team

Regardless of where your next chapter takes you, chances are there will be a young professionals group, intramural Frisbee® team or DIY group. You just have to find it. Take some time, find one and attend an event. It’s important to get to know other people in your area. It gives you the opportunity to make new friends and network (your first job probably won’t be your last). Sure, you’ll keep in touch with your friends from college – maybe a few of them even live nearby – but take advantage of the opportunity to meet some new faces and make some new connections. Meetup® might be able to help.

Dress for the Job You Want

Regardless of what type of job you’re going for, you need to dress the part. While there may be some pieces of your college wardrobe that make the cut, there’s going to be a transition period. Embrace it. By now you’ve heard regardless of what industry you’re going into, the rule of thumb is to dress to impress for interviews.

Once you start on the job, work wardrobes come in all different shapes and sizes. Don’t be afraid to ask about appropriate work attire if you aren’t sure. If you’ll be working outside, make sure you have clothes that can stand the elements – rain or shine, hot or cold. Does your job involve rolling up your sleeves and getting messy? If yes, make sure you have something that’s durable, but also easy to clean. Have a less adventurous, office job? Remember - just because it’s trendy, doesn’t mean it’s work appropriate.

Dressing for the job you want, not the job you have, is a real thing. Take time to understand what the attire expectations are and make an investment to dress the part.

Make a Chore Chart

Whether you’re moving out into your own space, or moving back in with your parents, you’re going to have more responsibility to clean. While it may remind you of your childhood days, a chore chart is a great way to make a rotating cleaning schedule. Whether you choose to organize and rotate by room, or by function (dusting one day, vacuuming another) you can tackle it piece by piece and ensure it all stays clean.

Vacuuming will be a part of your list, and the good news is you don’t need a big vacuum to help you do the job. Shop-Vac® has a few smaller wet/dry vacuums that would make the perfect sidekick. Powerful, durable and compact, plus they clean up wet and dry messes. It’s the perfect starter vacuum. Choose your size. For the ladies, the All Around® vacuums come in sizes ranging from one and a half to four gallons*. They’re also available in blue, pink, purple and green. Let’s be honest, the color matters. For the guys, there’s a stainless steel five-gallon* model that is sure to tackle your messes. Are you an adult who successfully braved the transition from college? If so, what are some of the helpful things you did to help get started and stay organized? Please share your tips with us!

Mint® is a registered trademark of Intuit, Inc. Frisbee® is a registered trademark of Wham-O, Inc. Meetup® is a registered trademark of Meetup, Inc.