• Ashish

That Time I Finished University and Felt Stuck


Just a few weeks ago I found myself finishing my university degree. Suddenly, feeling at my wits ends, at a time I should be relaxing all I could think about now was “what will happen next?” Albeit my nature or even my ability to stay in work mode 100%, giving myself a ‘break’ for a while didn’t really seem to sit well with me.

Ever since secondary school I have persisted in working even harder each academic year. Never one to be at the top end of the board in terms of marks, I always gave it my all to at least appear in the middle section. To me, giving your 100% to every task you do certainly does pay off, if not now then in the future.

Flashback to my final week of Uni (where I am sitting on my bed, with a cup of green tea and a cookie). Because it's important to treat yourself once in a while or more than often. Here I am having received my results for my final module, and ecstatic, elated comes to my mind. Never one to toot my own horn I wasn’t expecting the highest of grades (as I am always harder on myself then one needs to be).

So much so that as soon as my results opened I had to blink a few times. The mark sheet read 75% (my best mark so far). But then anxiety and the present day set in as I started to panic finding it hard to catch my breathe so easily. That’s when I started to take a few breathes to get back into my safe space.

They definitely say life hits you when you least expect it, similar to reality too. But it’s when one chapter closes that

you begin to wonder about the next one. I am not saying that I would like to read the future (although that would be cool!).

I am just asking for a little bit of a sign or reassurance that my university qualification will get me far (I know it will eventually). But I am talking about the next chapter, my first job…

Flash forward 5 weeks later and I am in the same place though approaching the situation with a different mindset. It's hard to get out of habit or even appear ‘unstuck’ most of the time, but I am coming to realise that I need to stay a few steps back in order to move a few steps forwards even more efficiently. This means reflecting and cherishing my university experiences, whilst preparing myself for the next chapter AND cutting myself some slack.

What I learnt from this particular experience:

  • Be grateful for what you have and what you have done. For me that is finishing my degree, working as an intern media producer and having a stable, encouraging family.

  • Every cloud has a silver lining: ending university brings with it incredible uncertainty but also boundless opportunities and excitement.

  • Working hard is important but resting is equally vital, you won’t be able to accomplish even half of your tasks if you're running solely on Redbull and cookies!

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#university #anxiety #change #uncertainty