Submitted Date 07/23/2019

This story is going to be a bit more different than the others that I have written. I consider it more of a personal reflection and a collection of honest thoughts on life after graduation.

After 4 very long yet fulfilling and joyful years of studying in Berklee College of Music, I put on my cap and gown and walked across a stage that metaphorically led me to the end of a scary yet beautiful journey. Graduation, although exciting, can be completely paralyzing; I remember stepping onto that stage with a million thoughts clouding my mind:

-What will life look like after this?

-Will I achieve all my dreams and goals?

-What if I don't?

-Will I have to ask my parents to support me financially after I graduate?

And many others.


I was already terrified about the so-called "real world," but the thought of pursuing music as a career made this "real world" enigma seem even more frightening. I graduated Berklee with a double major in Music Business Management and Songwriting, and as fortunate as I am to have loving and supporting family members, I grew up watching most of them pursue a more "conventional" and "financially viable" career (which is completely OK, don't get me wrong). My father and brother found their passion and talents in the finance world, my mom pursued accounting and switched to teaching later in life, and my sister followed her heart which led her to public health and all its wonders.

I'm definitely not saying it was easier for them once they finished school, but it feels as if finding internships and the ideal job was a bit more viable for them. In the music industry, especially as a songwriter, there aren't "songwriting" internships that have open applications. Instead, it is more about finding your way into the industry through the connections you have, the people you know and talent and hard work that you put in day in and day out.

I'm not here to discourage you (or myself), I am simply here to share some of the thoughts that have been going around my head and to tell you that it is normal to have these feelings or moments of doubts and insecurities. I am also here to share that I have come to terms with the fact that it is OK for you to take a very freaking well-deserved mental break after 4 intense years of college!

After a few months of reflecting, I have decided that before jumping into the big and scary pool that is the music industry, I will be taking a mental (health) break of 3 months so that I can work on my music, my craft and also save up some money before making the big move.

I hope you find it in yourself to accept that it is ok for you to stop, take a step back and look at the big picture that you are about to embark on. Graduation, and quite frankly any transition period in life can be challenging and scary. But remember, they are called "transition" periods because they will only lead you to a better place.

Keep working hard, and never lose your drive and passion. I hope this helps you, and if it doesn't relate to your current situation, I hope you find it in yourself to pass it along to someone you do know who may be in need of these words.



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  • Rick Doble 3 years, 10 months ago

    When you are in a transition it is always a good idea to take time to look back at where you have been and then to look forward to where you might go.

    • Cristy 3 years, 10 months ago

      Exactly! Thanks for reading, Rick.

    • Rick Doble 3 years, 10 months ago

      The American Indians have a saying that goes something like this, "White man often gets lost because he never looks back."

  • Catherine Rohsner 3 years, 10 months ago

    Oh, yes! As someone who wants to pursue becoming an author, poet, artist, and more I relate! I graduated with an English degree and other studies (music, Spanish, creative writing) in 2018. It took me over a year to find a job that fit me well, but when I found it it was at the right time. My college orchestra conductor said it well, quoting from the conductor who came before him, "There is life after college." :)

    • Cristy 3 years, 10 months ago

      Hey Catherine! I am so glad that this post clicked with your situation and I am super happy to hear that you followed your dreams! We got this. Best to you.