Jessica Gonzalez
Updated Aug 17, 2015 @ 11:59 am

I finally landed a job in the field I am passionate about (my choice to study English has officially been validated! And I am feeling amazing!), and now I’m currently experiencing those awkward two weeks before my start date. You know, those is-this-going-to-be-OK jitters? Of course it will be. But here’s the way I’ve figured out how to beat those insecure feelings before starting a new gig.

Research your new employer

Of course, I’d already researched the company prior to my interview — I was super excited to potentially work there, so it was actually fun to look up its history, recent headlines, and so on. I figured it wouldn’t hurt to supplement this research by learning even more about the company in terms of a general idea of its culture. It goes a long way to combating jitters when you know what you’re in for, so I’ve been reading up on my field as best I can. Of course, you’re going to learn a lot on the job, too. But it never hurts to be prepared.

Plan out your commute

For my new job, I will be taking the train into the city every day, so I’m making the necessary arrangements beforehand (as in, buying my monthly pass ahead of time). For others, planning out your commute might include figuring out the quickest and most logical route, factoring in morning traffic, and maybe even test-driving the way to work prior to the start date. Planning out my daily commute is definitely helping me feel even more prepared and less worried that I’ll be way late my first day. I’m also in the middle of making a morning train playlist to get myself ready for the day. It’s fun, and it helps combat the nervous feelings.

Figure out what you’re going to wear

If you’re anything like me, you’ll find that creatively planning new outfits to wear to work is yet another fun part of starting a new job. Planning outfits ahead of time is also another way to save yourself even more time as you get ready in the morning — and what’s better than having a few extra minutes to have that much-needed coffee?

I have set aside a few options for the week, neatly hanging each outfit so I can grab, get dressed, and go in the mornings. I’ve also made sure to assess the company dress code and the weather for that week so that my wardrobe choices are functional, appropriate, and even kinda stylish (and consequently, they help me feel more confident!)

Lunch plans!

Notice the whole planning trend? On the Sunday before I start, I’ll make sure to make lunch for the week from groceries I bought that weekend. Making a large portion of something easy to bring in and eat (bonus points for lunches that need not be reheated — easy-peasy ideas from Pinterest like this and this) will be super convenient to pack during the week when you’re too tired to fuss with food. It’ll also be helpful to budget and estimate how much money you’ll be willing or able to spend during the week on takeout or lunch with coworkers.

Having some fun!

Work gets busy really quickly, so, while I can, I’m also fitting in some time with loved ones. I had a family vacation before my start date, so I was thankful to have had time with family and friends on the beach before going back to work. Now, I’ll feel refreshed and even more ready to start this new chapter. If you have time to catch up with friends and family before starting a new job, it’s incredibly relaxing and revitalizing to do so!

If you’re starting a new job, good luck and take advantage of the bit of down time before your start date. You’ll be happy you did!

[Image via 20th Century Fox]