Feeling trapped in college
I’ve been going to school for 3 years now, and I just started the English major last semester, after mostly screwing around for 2 years, so I’m pretty behind, and it will take me another 3 years to graduate maybe.
And at this point, I’m just tired of school, and I know I have more to go. I just feel like my life isn’t going anywhere anymore. I have some really genuine and amazing friends, and have had some great experiences with them, and if I hadn’t gone to school I probably would not have met them, so I am ever so thankful for that opportunity.
But that is all school means to me now. I like learning but, I’m starting to feel like what I’m learning about is pointless. I’m pretty much just cycling through regurgitated information, and while interesting to learn about the underlying themes behind a Shakespeare play, it doesn’t really serve me a life purpose.
Aside from creative writing classes, I’m not really enjoying what I’m learning anymore. I don’t even feel like I can settle down with one path, and stay in that field for 30+ years.
Also dorm life is kinda lame to me now, it was exciting at first, and there was one semester that was really amazing when I had a group of close friends who are open-minded and spiritual people like HEthens. However, none of them are here now, they all left school for various reasons, and now I’ve been hanging out with one of them and his girlfriend who now live in a house down the street everyday. Those the only people I hang out with. A lot of people who live in the dorms just wanna get drunk and talk about sports or sex. Which aren’t my type of people. I want to get a house next semester, because I’m pretty tired of the dorm life.
I am 21 years old, and I have been going to school ever since I graduated from high school. I sort of feel like I’m missing out on greater things in life, and school is a hindrance from those things. I don’t even know what I could do with an education, because its not like I can make a lot anyway. I’m not good at math, so something practical like engineering or computer science are paths that wouldn’t be good for me.
On the other hand, the economy is shit, its hard to get anything in this economy right now. I feel like if I wasn’t in school, then I’d just be sitting on my ass if I can’t find a job.
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dude, go somewhere cool to work next spring/summer. i was in a similar place a few years ago, so i left to work in a ntnl. park. i ended up deciding not to go back until i decided what exactly i was going to school for (which i now know, so i’m headed back in january).
anyway, there are many seasonal towns full of open jobs. all you have to do is show up at the right time of year. the best thing about the parkie lifestyle is that you get to live in beautifull places, and get to know them better than the folks who travel halfway across the globe to spend three nights in an overpriced cabin. even if you don’t have a car, you can still get by if you have basic social skills. just get yourself out there!
21 is young buddy. I’m 23 and just started. If you’re tired, maybe you should join another program like Americorps. I did a mentoring program under Americorps when I was 20, and it was awesome. Best year of my life. Moved across the country and everything. I can understand that you’re tired of school, but I would still work for that degree. its SO hard to get back into it when you stop going, took me 5 years. So… I wouldn’t suggest completely giving it up, maybe you could work and get a house with room mates and take a few classes as well? Eventually, you’ll graduate. But even though most people graduating right now don’t have great jobs, jobs are still going to want degrees in order to promote you. It sucks, the way society does things, but it’s where we’re at. JUST DO WHATEVER MAKES YOU HAPPY!
@thenameless, Welcome to the machine. Man, you are in college, this is as free as you’re ever going to be unless you strike oil. Plus, you’re talking like you’ve hit a dead end. I think you need some brand new eyes.
There’s a reason why sex, drugs, and rock n roll are so damn popular. And maybe people talk about sports because it’s better to hear than people whining about their sad-ass life! You have to put yourself out there and make something happen, otherwise you will get trapped in this “cage” which YOU keep yourself in, and it will be your fault. You want to feel inspired again? Inspire yourself with some amazeballs writing and publish it! Try to become editor for your school’s paper. Or act out fucking Shakespeare at parties and make drunk women giggle until they sleep with you. There is literally so much you can do with your life, and I get really agitated when I read about people complaining about life being so fucking uncool to them. It’s GARBAGE!
No matter what you do, do not drop out, screw around with druggies, then travel alone seeking solace/enlightenment/sense of freedom/whatever. Your problems follow you. They will dog you when you’re high, when you’re alone at night, or when you’re on the edge of the earth. It doesn’t matter. You have to make a difference for yourself. I’m trying to speak some sense into you because I’ve been down that path, and that path sucks. Don’t do it.
I read your post again, and it seems as though you’re writing about how life is making you feel right now. It is NOT life’s job to make sure you’re happy. You reap what you sow, man! You want fucking fantastic friends forever? Then be that friend.
Got it? Or just read what the titshoffen german guy said.
@thenameless, I agree with the General and with Autumn. There are so many things you can do, so suck it up.
Quit school, strike a new path. But, you are probably afraid of doing that, because there is no certainty in getting a job or doing well. But then again, there is no certainty in finishing school and doing well because of that. Yet, the thought of “go to school, get a job, succeed in life” is so deeply ingrained in your head that it frightens you to turn away from it.
Regardless of the reason, your life is your choice. There are so many things you can do, that there is no reason to sit and feel sorry for yourself. I realized today that no matter what we do, things just fall into place. We fear for the future, yet when we get there, even if we fucked up on the way, everything seems to turn out all right. We’ll still be little specks of dust, walking around on a bigger speck of dust, drifting around a cosmological furnace, lost in space and time.
If that’s too much to wrap your head around, then remember that it is your life, and even though that it and everything else is meaning less in the “grand scheme of things”, what you do with it creates meaning. You say you are an English Major, and that you enjoy creative writing. As far as I know, the great creative writers usually didn’t graduate with fancy degrees from a big school. They sat down and wrote, got rejected, wrote some more, got rejected again, and finally had a story that made a name for them.
If you’re tired of school, then leave. It will only be an expense that will follow you, which will be a waste if you didn’t have your heart in it. Strike out on your own, and write. Create beauty, create words, create life. Bring some meaning into this meaningless world, brighten someone’s day with your stories.
But whatever you do, make sure it’s a choice made for you, and for no one else. Like I said, the future has a way of working out. So ignore all those who say “but if you quit school, you’ll never go anywhere”.
Create your own path, and follow it. Even if its through the woods, and not along the beaten path. The woods are much more interesting any ways.
@thenameless, It’s ultimately up to you. That being said though, finish what you started. You wasted your time (well not really) if you drop it. Get a degree so you have a plan b even if it doesn’t excite you. Enjoy school and being young don’t over complicate things. I do the same things but I’ve learnt to let loose and enjoy the moment through meditation.
Has anyone here succeeded outside of college?
Also, i disagree with the economy as being a good reason to stay in school, it may be safe, but once you graduate you’re fucked. You will not only have loans to pay off, but you will likely have a degree that is useless(unless you are going to school for engineering, technology, medicine etc) and you will have to face the harsh reality of the economy anyway and, oh, yeah, don’t forget about the loans!
School isn’t worth it unless you care about that subject enough to get a degree in it. You can educate yourself. In a bad economy, people who have unique personal experience through their own knowledge of a discipline are more valued then any other guy just went and got a degree and knows the same things that ‘x other guy’ knows.
I went to college in 09′ and have not gone back since. It’s been three years for me, and I’m terrified to go back and waste money that I do not have on uncertainty. I work 40 hours a week and feel trapped. I have good co workers, but it isn’t what I want to do.
I think what I’ve gathered after this time is life experience. It has definitely helped me to learn some humility and how to put a smile on a strangers face. I still don’t know what I want to do for a career, but I’m starting to understand what I like and love. So I’m just pointing my needle toward that and going for it. Dunno if that helped, but there is my input. =/
@stereofidelic, You helped as much as you could. Pretty much describes my experience too. Unfortunately, I think its just a lower consciousness that our society has devolved into. The idea behind a society based on materialism; the “go to school, get a job, get a car, a wife and kids” philosophy. We aren’t supposed to just do one thing, or become one thing in life. We’re too spontaneous, and unfortunately society doesn’t seem to have a middle ground for that. We’re pretty much stuck to live our lives in a linear fashion that complements the structure of materialistic society.
Do you like computers? You should try and see if you don’t have a knack for IT. You don’t need to go to school and get a degree in IT. Experience matters more than a degree. Study for the basic stuff, and then take an exam to get this the A+ Certification. With an A+ Certification alone there are tons of job opportunities, and there are also lots of opportunities to move up in the field as well. You can buy a self-study kit(for around $100) or just buy a basic Networking Technology for Dummies book for like $15. Teach yourself the material to get higher certs that will make you more qualified for higher-end jobs.
This is what I’m currently planning to do.
Everyone else already hit the nail on the head with your obvious choices. The only suggestion I can offer you is that if you decide to stay in college, connect what you’re learning to your reality somehow.
College only offers you building blocks and sign posts. You’re the one that has to build something out of it.
I am in the same boat! There are two belief systems that are fighting inside of me. 1) I realize how pointless college is when it comes to being successful in life, 2) I finish everything that I start. It really depends on what your aspirations are in life. If all you want is to get a job then I suggest staying in college, because college can help you get paid more. Money is important, it is right up there with oxygen, not for the selfish things you can do with it, but all the people you can influence and help. I hope achieving wealth is a goal of yours.
Now, if you are part of the minority and understand that entrepreneurship is the way to go then I say drop out, because college really has no benefit for you as what corporate america wants is irrelevant. College to an entrepreneur means taking your money and time for a piece of paper you will put on the wall. There are a lot of different endeavors out there that can make you money you just have to find the right ones for you. One thing that I can not stress to you enough, that a mentor of mine stressed to me, WORK ON SELF DEVELOPMENT. It will change your life. “Formal education will make you a living, which is fine. Self education will make you a fortune, which is super fine!”
I saw you asked earlier if anyone on here has “succeeded” without a college education. You should not only be asking that, but is there anyone on here succeeding that has a college education, as formal education guarantees nothing. What is your definition of succeeding? What is your chief aim in life? Good luck on your decision, as I believe you will make the best one for you!
@thenameless, not very relevant to you but heres a post on why or why not to go to graduate school (I don’t think you get paid for PhD / masters in english):
“Should I go to graduate school?”
My advice is going to be brutal:
If you want a “job”, you picked the wrong major.
If you want to really be someone you better start figuring out how to be a writer, and a damn good one. You need to have confidence in yourself that you are interesting, and people wanna hear what the hell you have to say, or create (fiction novels).
If you don’t like writing, then you better think about teaching high school or middle school.
If these don’t appeal to you, you need to change your major to something “job” worthy, and be moderately happy with the rest of your life.
you can get some b.s. job and do whatever the fuck you want, go travel the world. work for some b.s. company as an accountant or some kind of cubicle dude, and then after a year go travel, or buy some land, do something worthy of awesomeness. With a couple grand you can go almost anywhere, and if you’re daring you can get a job wherever you go.
the world is yours, man. realize it.