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13 December 2017

The Pressure of Life After University | Blogmas Day 13


University. I feel like it passed in a blur and now it's just one giant, nostalgic, part of my life which has come to an end. It still hurts my brain when I think the best three years of my life (so far) are at an end, I can hardly believe it myself, and it's now been over 6 months since I sat my final exam and said goodbye to life as a Politics student.

Getting a degree, holds a lot of pressure. Not just the pressure of obtaining the degree in the first place, but then actually finding a job where you'll use it. Every single person I know has heard the words 'but how does that relate to your degree' when they tell friends and family what they're doing now. I completely understand the thinking, it's a lot of debt for something you won't use, but the actuality of having the degree in the first place is what often opens the doors for them, whether it's related to the subject they studied or not. The truth is, I probably won't end up in Politics, but I loved studying it, and the discipline and time spent earning my degree is what landed me my job in PR after University.

But now, I'm back home working in a coffee shop, saving up to go away in the New Year. So where does that leave me? The issue is, people often equate a degree to being some sort of stepping stone to having your life figured out, to having it sorted. It's a lot of money to spend to end up working in Starbucks, yes, you're right, but that time spent working in Starbucks, isn't the be all and all. It's a month, or a year of your life, and that's it.

So why am I absolutely mortified any time somebody I went to school with enters the coffee shop I work in? Why do I blush and stutter about how I'm only working here whilst I save up money to go to Australia? There is absolutely nothing wrong with working in a coffee shop, I fully believe anyone who has a job, whatever that may be, is lucky to be employed in the first place. But the pressure and stigma I put on myself, is different. And I hugely think that's because of the pressure of 'succeeding' within a year of graduating from university.

The truth is, life after university is not always graduate schemes in London and £28k salary jobs. It's figuring out what you want to do, it's trial and error and finding out you love one area and hate another. It's living and working at home whilst you decide what new path you want to take. Getting a degree makes you no different to the other millions of people out there, you'll still feel lost, you'll still feel stressed and finding your footing is probably 100x harder because you have people breathing down your neck about that debt. Degree or no degree, we're all still just trying to figure out what makes us happy, and those of us that did go to university just have to do that 3 years later than everyone else.

I'm really feeling the pressure of life after university at the moment, how do you feel about it if you did go? What do you think on the subject if you didn't?

Love, Alice x


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