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Thread: Considering Giving up on Uni

  1. #1
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    Considering Giving up on Uni

    Hi,

    I am looking for suggestions and opinions on what to do about uni.

    • I am 32, work full time in a field related to my degree and study part time from home
    • My degree is self funded, currently studying my penultimate module which is double credits so twice as much effort as my last module will be
    • My job is ok, pay is low for the field but is plenty to survive on
    • I have opportunity for progression in my career without my degree, just not as much money or with the most sought after employers
    • Getting my degree has always been important to me, it's been a main ambition to me since I was a kid
    • I went to uni as a young adult and had some funding issues which meant I was unable to complete my final year (I was part way through)
    • Being unable to complete uni was highly stressful and devastating


    If I do not complete my final module at the next opportunity (Feb 2020 start) I will not be able to ever complete my degree unless I start from the beginning

    Here is my dilemma, I am HATING studying, this module particularly I am finding irrelevant and stressful. I am in a constant battle to motivate myself to work towards this module which is not very relevant to my career but necessary to achieve the degree. I have sacrificed so much to get this close to finish my degree but feel so stressed out by it I don't want to go any further. Every assignment that is due I have panic attacks and crying fits, struggle to motivate myself to do the work and the closer the deadline looms the more depressed and erratic my behaviour becomes. I am 2 weeks from the final hand in deadline for this module and feel so overwhelmed by the work I need to do, even though I know it is all in my head and really not that difficult. I am constantly questioning whether it is worth the stress but feel like I have given up so much to pursue this degree I need to finish it. I know I will be very angry with myself and devastated if I give up, even though I don't need it. The last assignment deadline I did very well on, I worked on it most days from the date of the previous hand in until the deadline and was happy with what I submitted. It wasn't particularly stressful and I though I had cracked how to enjoy (or at least not hate uni). Any advice on what to do? I feel like I am compromising my wellbeing for this goal but if I don't finish this degree I know I will be so disappointed in myself and really regret not completing it.

  2. #2
    Forum Supporter ~Seraphim ~'s Avatar
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    You keep saying the module is irrelevant, but it isnít. It is really relevant if you want the degree . Would it help if you stop looking at it as irrelevant ? Because it really is relevant . No learning is pointless .

  3. #3
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    I do know or you feel. I'm in a very highly stressful degree myself, and also 32. I failed a very important exam right at the very beginning of my course because I had an allergic reaction half way through and had to leave, which I was struggling with before the exam even started. As a result, it meant that the entire degree was going to be almost impossible to pass just because of the way they grade in the Cambridge system.

    It was incredibly difficult to keep giving everything I had to the degree when I had very little chance of passing. My supervisor also told me from the beginning that she thinks I have no hope at it, which is very distructive for her to be doing.

    I also have financial issues where I am self-funded and the degree cost me $63,000 AUD just for 11 months. My previous employer in Japan screwed me over and I had to pay thousands of dollars just before coming to England to start my degree, which left me out of pocket. I also applied for hardship funding, which I was unsuccessful at receiving and now live in worry about where my next meal will come from. And, due to Cambridge policy, I'm not allowed to work during my degree. On top of that, I also unexpectedly lost my mother just 4 months prior to my degree beginning.

    So, with all of that, I often felt exhausted and stressed and completely overwhelmed by what seemed like the impossible. But, you just have to make up your mind to do it, then find effective coping mechanisms to help you achieve your goal.

    I would suggest to you to seek out your mental health team at university and keep regular appointments. Start your days with some exercise and a good timetable so you can effectively manage your time. If you don't already have a good diet, then work on that as well. A healthy body also helps a healthy mind and vice versa. Reach out to people and get involved in other non-Uni related things to help balance you out and offer equilibrium back to your life. Set yourself small, achievable goals and aim for those. Don't keep looking at the bulk of what you have to do otherwise it can overwhelm you.

    Just keep putting one foot in front of the other. You will be so upset with yourself in the future when you're no longer stressed and haven't got your degree. You'll wonder why you didn't just try that little bit harder. You can do it!!!
    Last edited by LotusBlack; 05-14-2019 at 08:47 AM.

  4. #4
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    OP, you got good advice from the other posters.

    I wrote my dissertation and worked at the same time for two months so i understand (kind of) where you are coming from. What I would do in your shoes : I would take 5 days off work before the exams and concentrate 100% on the exams. I wouldn't get involved with any non-related activities and I wouldn't go out with friends until the exams. When you want to take a break, take a 30 minutes walk around the area.

    This is how I cope, it doesn't mean it will be effective for you, just offering my opinion.

    PS. You are studying engineering if I remember correctly

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  6. #5
    Gold Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    I am so sorry. I worked too (several jobs) to pay my way through studies. This will definitely sound cliche but you've got to pull yourself together and remain positive. You seem like you may be at the height of stress at the moment so this might be very difficult. A lot of about stress management means learning to recognize and target triggers and causes of stress/anxiety in order to be more effective.

    While I was working and studying, I discovered that by combining my hobbies with the potential to earn extra income, I was not only minimizing stress, I was also building on skills that were transferable to the way I dealt with stress at work and in school. I took a few navigational/survival courses and trained for awhile as a recreational (solo) kayaker and then took some instructor courses and taught in the summers locally at a cove/inlet about one and a half hours' bus ride away from the university campus. The courses focused not only on paddle techniques but they also focused on time management while out in the field/open water, navigational skills (attention to detail and surroundings) and probably taught me a whole lot more about discipline than I'd like to admit because I wasn't as disciplined as I should have been starting out. It gave me a new dimension to my purpose and caused me to question what I would do with my degrees. Time and time again, I questioned what my purpose was and ironically on the water, all the answers were easy. I found my answers while on the water.

    It's important to have your hobbies and make time for them in addition to studying and working. I noticed that you didn't mention anything about seeing your instructors or developing any relationship or rapport with them. It's a good support network if you're able to speak with your instructors. They will understand more how you think and be able to guide you both directly and indirectly in your assignments. If you are veering off the mark (not what they're looking for or if you're missing the points they're looking for), they will be able to guide you back. You'll need to engage with them in order to score those marks. This is not a lot different from real life and work. You'll often have to seek your superior or the person you're reporting to and establish what that person is looking for in terms of results or work expectations. Again, recognize the triggers for stress and anxiety as soon as possible and target/eliminate them. If it's the fear of poor marks or errors, you'll have to target those weak areas and create different pathways to succeeding. I hope this helps.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member figureitout23's Avatar
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    Do you notice your tendency to run when things get hard?

    I obviously donít know you as a person but it does seem to be a theme in your posts.

    Conflict or challenges arise and you book it.

    Fight that fight or flight instinct and fight!!! You can do it.

  8. #7
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    You've got two weeks to go, and then you can put that module behind you for ever.

    It IS relevant, because it's part of your degree. Quite apart from that, you only know what's relevant in hindsight - this may not be part of your particular area of interest right now, but you never know what will happen in the future. Something may come up in two years, five years, ten years time which calls on knowledge you're dismissing right now. (For example, a school friend of mine failed her 'O' Level German very badly - didn't even get a grade, just 'Unclassified'. She dismissed it, saying that she was never going to need it anyway. Fast forward 12 years... she married an Austrian guy, ended up living in the country and had to start learning German from scratch. To be fair, she DID laugh at the irony of it....)

    As to how you cope with the next couple of weeks... a plan is needed. As it's just for a couple of weeks, would you be able to get some kind of medication for the anxiety? (I'm prescribed beta blockers as a migraine preventive, for example, but they're great for making anxiety just evaporate!) Other than that, can you break your work down into manageable chunks and deal with one at a time, without letting the stress of not doing the others impinge on your concentration? Can you break it down and make sure you reward yourself with stress-busting activities at sensible intervals? (I get through doing the computations required for my tax return using this method!). Right now, your ability to self-soothe is as important as your ability to study - if not more so - and self-care is needed. The rational part of you acknowledges that the subject matter is not all that difficult, but the emotional part is not at all happy to go along with it. The emotional part is the bit clamouring for attention right now, and you are the one who is best placed to know what works for you.

    Good luck!

  9. #8
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    You are so close. It would be really foolish to give it up.

    Do you do any meditation to help ground you?

  10. #9
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    Originally Posted by Hollyj
    You are so close. It would be really foolish to give it up.
    I agree. Do whatever it takes to get through it. Have your pity party daily but time limit it - five or ten minutes - and then make a dance tape (well it was a tape when I was in grad school -a song list on your phone) and dance like a madwoman in your living room to it when you feel a panic attack coming on.
    Yes, it is bad for your wellbeing to study your behind off - many of us have been there - yes, I posted index cards in my bathroom with stuff to memorize so that peeing wouldn't take me away from my studies. Yes i panicked, yes, I got hives, stomach aches, insomnia, yes. And yes it was TOTALLY worth it. I finished my grad degree 25 years ago and other than marriage and motherhood it is the best thing I ever did for myself.

    Don't indulge in the wilting flower stuff -for two weeks you can tough it up, and after that you can take a break and get your wellbeing back. meanwhile to limit the effects on your wellbeing force yourself to drink tons of plain water and no sodas or sugary drinks or alcohol -just for two weeks.

    Do the 4-7-8 breathing Weil method. Yes, you will regret it horribly if you give up now. You can do this.

  11. #10
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    I know exactly how you feel when it comes to hating your modules and the stress. Firstly, WELL DONE for taking all of this on. The fact you have done well with your assignment shows that your doing something right. Honestly if I was in your position I would hire a tutor, (not that you need one) or a study buddy. Just to make the assignments and work a little bit more bearable. When I was at Uni and about to give up in my final year I got a tutor and he became my therapist, friend and teacher. Just keep reminding yourself why your doing this and its only temporary. Then how amazing your going to feel when its all over.

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