I moved to Guildford exactly one year ago today. And what a year it’s been…

I originally moved to the area for an internship, but fell in love with this bustling rural town. It had everything for me: enough shops to entertain me for an entire retail therapy session; enough bars that I haven’t tried all the cocktails yet; close enough to London for a day trip, but far enough away for tranquillity. The one downside is that Guildford is the far side of London from home town in Lincolnshire, meaning that journeys to see my family and friends take several hours. However, that seemed a small price to pay for finding somewhere lovely to settle down.

Guildford castle grounds

Coming up to my Guildford-anniversary gives me a fantastic opportunity to look back on how I have grown over the past year. As anyone from my BNI chapter would tell you, when I first turned up there, looking for a job opportunity in someone else’s company, I was incredibly shy and nervous. Now, far more confident, I own my own company, and am happy to stand up every week and give my 60 second presentation.

Multiple-Paths

When I left university, I boldly took the decision to move to the far end of the country and take a qualification in a completely different field to my degree. It was a daring choice, but one that has paid off hugely. I can only imagine the situation I would now be in, had I continued along my previous path of theoretical physics research. I definitely wouldn’t be the independent businesswoman I am today.

To those leaving university in the next few months, I heartily encourage you to think outside the box when contemplating your future. Don’t stick to the safe route, and walk in the footsteps you see laid before you. In this economic climate more than any other time, it is important to find the right career for you, in the right location for you, and to have a long hard think about what that could be.

Personally, I recommend Guildford as the ideal location to kickstart your graduate life. If nothing else, I know a lot of amazing people here who are happy to help a young professional find her feet and get ahead in her career.

Note: this blog post originally featured on www.socialquirk.co.uk.

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