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How to Get Your Personal Life in Order After Institute

If you are nearing the end of your summer training, you are likely thinking, "Now what?" Alum Katelyn Wilhemi shares sound advice for getting your personal life in order after Institute. 

By Katelyn Wilhelmi

July 13, 2015

Real life is here, and you may be feeling a lot of things: nervous, excited, scared, stressed, overwhelmed, uncertain, happy…you get the picture. The point is people leave Institute in various stages of emotional and mental stability.

In your frenzy to plan for the school year, make sure you take care of yourself and your personal needs, too. That means lining up all of your personal business, as well as whatever leisure activities or hobbies you need to stay sane. I love to run, and exercise regularly. For me, it’s as much about staying healthy as it is about relieving stress. What’s important is you remember what makes you the person you are, and that you don’t lose that just because you move to a new part of the country. I joined a gym right away through a local healthcare company. It’s important for you to reflect on what your needs are, and then keep that activity, or activities, in your life even after you begin teaching.

Here is a list to help you think through some of the important but easy to forget tasks you’ll need to consider in the next few weeks. Having these matters settled will give you more time to focus on adjusting (and enjoying!) your new community.

  1. Open your bank account.
  2. Go to the doctor/dentist—and find one in your area!
  3. Take care of your benefits with your school district. Call the district office and go in for a meeting with the benefits director. Take the time to do it before school starts to learn what they have to offer.
  4. Organize your student loans.
  5. Change your driver’s license or plates.
  6. Change your mailing address.
  7. Find a gym and become a member. Make sure you visit it consistently, so you stay healthy (and don’t waste money!).
  8. Buy furniture. Ask around for good local places to buy a bed and a dresser. I found a great place to buy furniture right in my town, and didn’t have to travel to the nearest big city to get what I needed. Chances are it’s right in front of you, but you might have to search for it.
  9. Ask your family to come to you! If you want to see your family, ask them to make a trip down to your new community. You can visit with them and show them your new life at the same time. Both my parents came to visit me in my new home, and it was very comforting for them (and me) to see where I was living, to see my school, and meet my roommates.

Two general principles to keep in your mind throughout your transition: Try not to make mountains out of mole hills, and take deep breaths.

Everything is going to work out! Even if it doesn’t seem like it right now, it will. Strive to have a positive attitude about all the uncertainty to maintain a healthy state.