How to survive your first year of full-time work

How to avoid stressing in your first year of full time employment.

How to avoid stressing in your first year of full time employment. Photo Getty

Those first few months of full-time work can be rough.

It’s a time of adjusting to the 9-to-5 as sleep-ins become a weekend-only activity. A time of getting to know a new workplace culture as you try to memorise names and find the best local cafe. And a time when you head up that steep learning curve of putting your training and education into action.

All in all, full-time work is an exciting new transition that can come as a bit of a shock to the system.

Here are five tips on how to survive the early stages of full-time work:

1. Develop a new routine

A new job calls for a new schedule. According to the Fair Work Ombudsman, full-time work is 38 hours a week, which can leave you feeling drained.

Develop your own set of rules on when to have late nights – preferably Friday and Saturday nights – and when you need to get to bed early. Be strict about getting enough sleep or you’ll pay for it with sagging eyelids the next day.

Practice good sleep habits such as winding down without screen time before bed and regular exercise.

2. Learn to say no

It’s easy to become overwhelmed by events outside work such as social activities, sport and family commitments. While it’s important to have outlets, it’s also crucial to find a balance.

The sooner you master the art of saying no or at least asking for a raincheck, the sooner you’ll ease the pressure on your weekly schedule and find some much-needed time for yourself.

3. Work hard, play hard

Your hard work deserves rewards. Be sure to treat yourself regularly with something that puts your mind on anything but work. It could be a fortnightly massage or movie.

4. Holidays are not optional

Planning a holiday is what puts pep in the step of so many new full-timers. Knowing a refreshing break is on the horizon is not only motivating, but essential for life-work balance.

In addition to annual leave, employees are also entitled to personal leave, which includes sick, carer’s and compassionate leave. Get to know your entitlements here.

5. Set up your super

Choose the right super fund from the beginning of your working life and your future-self will thank you. The choice is yours, so take control of choosing your super fund instead of leaving it in the hands of your employer.

Go for a fund that has low fees so you can make the most of your hard-earned super savings. Ensure your fund can grow as your career does so you can stick with the same fund for life and avoid doubling up on fees.

It takes less than 15 minutes to set up an account with AustralianSuper and it’s easy to manage your account with the AustralianSuper app. Download it today to watch your super savings add up.


This article has been sponsored by AustralianSuper Pty Ltd ABN 94 006 457 987, AFSL 233788, the Trustee of AustralianSuper ABN 65 714 394 898. The views and opinions expressed in any article accessed through The New Daily are those of the author or The New Daily and not the responsibility of AustralianSuper. For more information about AustralianSuper, please visit

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