Over a year
ago, I was a student studying in sixth form. My life was very different to how
it is now, having to get up every day and endure something that I simply hated.
Not only did I not enjoy my classes and subjects, but I also hated the whole approach
to the sixth form life. Ever since I was young I have always craved
independence, hence I have never been very good at being told what to do.
Looking back now all I do is question my decision to go to sixth form, which I
can now see was totally the wrong choice for me. I needed to leave school, get
out of the childish environment and pursue something that I genuinely loved
learning about. If I could go back, I would probably go and do something along
the lines of business or media. I am such a practical person, so needed to do
something that was hands on and interactive.
It’s safe
to say that over a year ago I was pretty unhappy. I hated where I was and
regretted by decision so much. Then, to add to the fire, I had teachers going
on and on at me about university. Telling me that I needed to decide where I
wanted to go and start the application process. It wasn’t even really a choice;
it was approached as something that seemed like the only option. I was forced
to sit through tutor times filling out UCAS applications and starting a
personal statement. My stress levels increased and I became more and more
unhappy. I didn’t have a clue what I wanted to study at university, let alone
what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I kept thinking to myself how
unfair it was that I had to hastily make this decision, as well as feeling even
worse by the fact that everyone else seemed to know what they were going to do.
I spoke about my concerns with my family and it became clear very quickly that
they didn’t think university was the right choice for me. They know me best,
and having been themselves, they knew it was wrong for me. This was all I
needed to make my decision. So about a year ago now, when everyone was writing
away working on selling themselves to universities, I told my head of sixth
form that I wasn’t going. I stuck to my guns and made it very clear that I
would not be carrying on with the application process. Obviously they put up a
fight, trying to scare me in the nicest possible way to realise that it was the
only option. Over my last year at sixth form they started to back of
considerably, but I knew that they would never help me to look through other
options. Quite honestly, I felt so unsupported by the school with my decision;
a feeling that I don’t think any worried young adult should have to deal with.
Anyway, the point is that I wasn’t going and all I focused on was getting
through my last year and obtaining some okay grades. It was so hard, and I
cannot even express how miserable I was.
I want to
share my experience with you guys, because this is such a big decision that I
made and every other young person has to make. The majority of people I know
who are my age have gone to university, so I guess it is perceived as the
normal thing to do. I wanted to share this post today, purely to show people who
are making the decision that university is not the only option.

Academic vs Practical
I am always
very happy to admit that I am an extremely practical person. I hated academic
subjects, and always had to work pretty hard on them as it just didn’t come
naturally. My skills are not in maths nor science, but in more modern subjects
such as business studies and media. They are the things I enjoy and find come
very easily to me. I guess that is pretty obvious just by looking at and
reading my blog. I enjoy being creative and bringing all my ideas to life. I
guess this is the main reason that I started blogging. It is a platform where
you can share whatever you choose, and get as creative and imaginative as you
like. With these skills, I know that I would not have found a course that I
utterly enjoyed at university. If you want to be a doctor, engineer or
something more academic then even I know that university is the only way to go.
You need the qualifications in order to get to your dream job. However, with my
skills and what I enjoy, I know I will be able to get my dream job by starting
small and working my way up. I am not afraid of hard work, and I know that it
will be necessary in order to achieve my goals. Frankly, I think university
would have definitely slowed my whole career down. I am not a very patient
person, so I know that if I want to do something I just need to get on with it.
If there is the option to skip university and get to the exact same job another
way around I would always take it. Let’s be honest, just because you come out
of university with a degree, that does not mean that you are going to instantly
get to your job that you have been dreaming about.
What Do I Want to do with my Life?
The main
concern I had was that I really didn’t want to go to university for the sake of
it. The truth is that I really don’t have a clear plan for the rest of my life,
and don’t really know what I want to do. I know lots of people who went/ have
gone to university and have done a course that they just think they will enjoy.
This course is probably something quite broad that does not have a set job at
the end. It scares me for them, that when they get out they will land up doing
something that simply pays the bills, rather than something that they really
enjoy. I have always feared being in a job that I hate for the rest of my life,
so was determined not to make the mistake of falling into the trap. I have
really never understood why people choose to run up so much debt, purely to go
and do something that they are not extremely passionate about.
So in
answer to my own question, I don’t really know what I want to do with my life.
At the moment I am really happy just working and keeping my blog going. I
really enjoy everything about blogging and my little job, and I can tell you now, I am so much happier compared to how I was this time last year.
Debt & Expenses
I guess
even a few years ago, the debt didn’t matter like it does now. I can’t even contemplate getting myself into that
much debt. I know that there are all the strings attached to do with when you
pay it back etc.… but I just couldn’t stand the thought of one day having to
get round to paying back that much money. I mean, nowadays students are going
to be leaving with around £48,000 to pay back. That is an insane amount of
money. When I think about future expenses such as a house deposit, mortgage,
car and supporting a family, I just think it is crazy to spend that much money
unless you are absolutely sure. Obviously, if you are absolutely sure and know
what you want to do it is worth it, but for me it wasn’t as I would simply be
going for the sake of it.

Student Life is Not for Me
I always
joke about this with my friends and family, but I am such an old lady, and in a way a waste of an 18-year-old. I hate being out late, hate going to
clubs and hate getting really drunk. So just from these three points
alone, university would have totally been the wrong decision for me! I like
being in my own home, being organised with life and being in bed by 11pm. The fact that I work full time massively affects this, but still, I am a
home bird. Speaking to my friends and hearing about all their new lives, I know
that I would have hated it. In fact, they have all told me that I would. If you don’t like doing things like this and like being a creature of
habit, is it really right for you? I know there are exceptions, but I just
couldn’t stand the idea of being miserable for another three or four years.
Is It Really Worth It?

This is the question that I was asking myself over and over again when deciding
if I should go or not. Obviously, I wasn’t really to know as I have never
experienced it myself, but from everything I have heard from others, I am so
glad that I made my decision. I really don’t think it is really worth it unless
you have a clear career path laid out that is pretty much guaranteed. I don’t
agree with using university as an excuse to just mess around for a few more years
before working, and I don’t think it is right to go just for the sake of it. I
know that many people will have different opinions about this, but it is just
the way I feel. I am so happy with my life the way it is right now, and know
that even without university everything will be okay for me. In fact, I think I
will carry on being much happier.

A few pieces of advice for those trying to make
the decision.
Resist pressure from pushy schools I was in a school where university seemed like the only option.
It was like because I had pretty handwriting and handed my homework in on time,
they instantly categorised me as a university girl. Never forget that as much
as some schools do support you and do what to be there for you, they also have
numbers and a reputation to keep up. The more students who go to university the
better it is for them. They all compete against one another, and all want to be
perceived as ‘the best’. If you feel something is not right for you, never let
a school push you into doing something you feel is wrong. I know this all
sounds really cynical, but I am so angry with how my situation was handled. I
didn’t feel like my teachers were thinking about what was right for me, and
quite honestly they made me feel so depressed purely from the pressure. Never
let anyone make you do something you are not comfortable with.
Talk to those who matter – the only reason I felt comfortable
with my decision and still do is because of the support from my family. Your
family will love you no matter what you decide to do with your life, and
ultimately will usually always know what is best for you. Get talking and
decide together what will be best.
Look at Other Options – as I’ve said a lot, university is
not the only option, so make sure you make yourself aware of what other ways
you can reach your goals. Talk to those who have done everything and look into
other options such as different courses and means of work. For so many jobs it is also
possible to get straight to work and learn on the job. Work hard, learnt as
much as you can and gradually work your way up.
Take Time – I am essentially taking a gap year to decide
what I want to do. I want the time to enjoy life without the stress of exams
and to just work and have fun. I want to go on a few holidays, work hard at my
job and eventually look into what I really want to do. I am keeping myself busy,
spending time with family and friends and just living a non-stressful life. It
was so needed after the stress of last year.
Always do what’s right for you – this is the key message that I
want to get across in this post. Yes, university is great for some people, so
yes it is right for some, but that isn’t the case for everybody. Never let
anyone pressure you into going, and never forget that there are other options

– thanks for reading – 


I have not been paid to publish this post, nor
feature any brands seen or mentioned.

I understand that there are many people who
will disagree with what I have said, but I am just going by my own experiences
and want to share these. Always feel free to get in contact.
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