I need to quit university, I’m close to burnout and I can’t do this anymore.
And you know what? That’s okay! Not okay to be close to burnout of course, but to quit! I think we should normalize quitting and changing our minds because we shouldn’t be required to be tied to something just because we want to try.
Changing one’s mind is not a sign of failure
I think many people give up on even starting something new because we have this thing in society that expects us to finish what we start – otherwise, we would be a failure.
Wouldn’t it be better if we encouraged people to test out new things, even when it comes to things like education, freelance, and similar “bigger” more “serious” things? Many people hold themselves back because they don’t want to admit that they “failed” if they quit because of an outcome they didn’t desire or because of something like that.
To me it’s a sign of strength to put yourself out there and say, “You know, regardless if I continue with this, I have now tried it and that’s a win in its own right!”
Health comes first because we couldn’t do life without it. If we have too much on our shoulders, quitting or taking a longer break shouldn’t be seen as a failure. It should be more natural if something. Like, “Okay that didn’t work, now let’s find something that does”. And then just move on without judging the situation.
The issue with deadlines
Do you know what I do right now instead of forcing myself to study at a university, that is all about deadlines and having everything neatly together in a specific time frame? All those things I’ve tried but can’t seem to keep up with due to… being me? Instead of seeing it as a failed thing on my bucket list to have that degree, I’m instead focusing on what I know works – also because I tried. I know courses with lifetime access or very long end dates for completing them work great for me. I know many people won’t do things if they don’t have a strict deadline, but I’ve learned – due to experience – that I’m the opposite. The education I have completed (like my vocational training diploma in social education as an example) was either lifetime access with no time limit to complete or they had such a big time frame with no strict deadlines and just an ending date, so I managed to complete it at my own terms. Because to me, if there is an interest in something, I will do it even without deadlines or ending dates to push me, because “pushing” doesn’t work for me. Stress for me is what kills my interest. In the end, it will be done because of interest and not because someone or something said so.
“No deadline, no finished product”?!
Many people say, “If there is no deadline, there is no project” meaning that if we haven’t set a strict time-based goal we won’t end up making it at all. Because of this, I’ve been feeling like a failure, because I know that the projects that have been successful for me have been those without strict deadlines and dates. I think it might be a thing with me being neurodivergent. I can’t say for sure, but to me, it seems like a neurotypical thing. Maybe – generally speaking – neurotypical brains need more deadlines to actually do things, while neurodivergent brains need more space and flexibility… Because I know something will be done if my interest in it is genuine. A course, a vocational program, and so on. Maybe other brains need pushing, but for me, it really is a disservice and kills my interest no matter how passionate I could be about something.
Everything I’ve successfully finished has been self-paced with no (or very loose) deadlines.
So what am I going to do now? I have applied to the University of Metaphysical Sciences because I want to embrace my more spiritual interests and I also want to take it easier on myself since this program has no deadlines that are set in stone and it’s all self-paced. After all, I have several disabilities and it’s not worth dying for to have a college degree from a traditional college or university in a traditional field.
Two days ago I got accepted into UMS and I’ve now slowly started to read the new material and familiarize myself with how it works. When studying spiritual subjects it’s important to take your time and let it take some time as well! I think this will suit me better.
I’m also taking a few courses at the Centre of Excellence that even give me CPD points (Continuing Professional Development) since I have a few vocational training diplomas that are in fields that CPD points can benefit. Since I have studied Social Education I’m taking courses in Psychology, Life Coaching, and Philosophy, but I also take totally unrelated courses like a Botany Diploma just for personal interest. All courses on CoE are self-paced with no deadlines as well, so that’s why that works!
I think all people want to do what’s good for them. For some people, it might be good with a little bit of pressure and stress. But to me, that doesn’t work at all! We need to find what suit us, and how can we do that if we are too afraid to even try and change our minds?
If you are too scared to lose, how are you going to win?