Hey, It’s Okay… If You Don’t Go To University

Hey It's OkayDisclaimer: All opinions are entirely my own and I don’t wish to try and influence anyone. This post outlines why I chose not to go to university and how I arrived at that decision.


From when I was five years old until the day I left school you couldn’t accuse me of not working hard or being lazy. With hard work comes success, a lot of which I enjoyed as a result of applying myself and just getting on with things. I’ve always been very conscientious and I not only like to get things done, I like to do them properly. I was your typical model student, never late for class, always handed work in on time and I never got a detention. It seemed to shock people when they learned I hated school and didn’t enjoy being there. Despite hating school, I still went everyday because I knew that I didn’t want to be a failure and I wanted to get qualifications.

Looking back I am still not entirely sure where this fear and hate stemmed from. I wasn’t someone who found it difficult to learn or didn’t enjoy learning but I was so scared of the other students. It seemed to start when I was 11 years old and I started becoming paranoid that everyone hated me and didn’t want me to be around. From then on and throughout high school I would very much keep to myself; I dreaded group activities because I was convinced no one wanted me in their group and I spent break times alone. I think here it’s important to point out that while I am naturally shy, I didn’t mind talking and working alongside other people, it was the feelings and insecurities that made me become hermit-like.

They say school years are the best of your life and for some people they might be, but because I found things so emotionally difficult I used to think to myself, “I hope not.” I didn’t want to have this constant fear of people and life and not to be able to complete ordinary day-to-day tasks.

I think another reason I disliked school was because there was many a time where I had finished all my work and no one else in the class had. Therefore, they would then get an extension or extra time to finish and I would be sitting there waiting for them with nothing to do. I don’t claim to be a genius or find everything super easy but I’m very strict when it comes to deadlines and part of me was scared I would get in trouble if something wasn’t finished.

I know this is meant to be about university, but it’s vital you have a backstory about my schooling so you can understand where I’m coming from. As you progressed through high school and got to choose your subjects and certain subjects weren’t compulsory anymore I found that difficult. I knew what I didn’t want to do but there wasn’t anything jumping out at me that I did want to do either. My subject choices were always academic and centered around writing. For example, in my last year of school I had five subjects (English, Media Studies, History, Health and Maths) and had exams for all of them, when lots of people only had three exams.

I always admired friends and students who knew exactly which university they wanted to go to and what they wanted to study. I had numerous people try to convince me to go to university but deep down I knew I didn’t want to. This sounds silly considering I want to move to England one day, but I was afraid to leave home and I didn’t want to feel lonely like I did at school. I have no sense of direction and being by myself in a new city scared me.

I decided to continue studying though. I signed up for a journalism course but ended up doing a Communications course. Three days before I was set to begin, I received a phone call saying it had been cancelled due to low numbers and Communications was the next closest. Some of my friends also studied on the same campus so it meant a feeling of familiarity. The course was one year long and I graduated in 2014. I’m not going to lie and pretend that course helped me get my current job or that I enjoyed every minute but I did meet some nice people and I’m proud of myself for giving it a go. My average grade overall was either an A or an A- which I’m also really proud of!

As I mentioned earlier, my problem has never been that I don’t enjoy learning or I’m not ‘smart’ enough but rather not knowing what to study. It’s hard to know what jobs are out there which is something I’ve always struggled with. Of course there are obvious ones such as, lawyers, doctors, nurses, chefs etc. but not everyone ends up being one of those. Even though I love music, I never considered studying it because quite often you have to play an instrument and know how to read music which I don’t. I did consider studying a beauty course but one of the things that put me off was the waxing element.

There’s nothing to say I won’t ever go to university or I won’t study again. I don’t regret the choice I made because I believe at the time it was the right thing for me. There will always be people offering advice and telling you what you should do but don’t ever let their opinions shape your decisions and what you want to do.


Let me know if you can relate to this post in any way. The discussions on my Hey, It’s Okay… posts are always riveting and extremely insightful!

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22 thoughts on “Hey, It’s Okay… If You Don’t Go To University

      • danniijane says:

        When I first started secondary school age 11, all my friends were in different classes. I remember on my first day sitting alone hating it school so much. I made friends but some people were nasty to me because I tried hard at school as I wanted the grades. It got better, but whilst I had friends I didn’t feel totally comfortable or that I fitted in at school. Uni is hard too. I had to travel in and it was so big and scary. I made friends but again with all the classes you do and different people, you don’t get to build a close friendship. I also was unsure on subjects. At 18 it’s hard to know what career you want x

        Liked by 1 person

      • Chanelle says:

        I feel like there’s so much pressure on someone to decide and know what they want to do with their life. Lots of people study something at uni and don’t end up working in what they’re trained in afterwards. Serious, life changing decisions get made by people who aren’t grown up themselves yet and may not know what they want to do. That relates to life as well, not just uni. Some might want to travel or take a gap year, others might want to do volunteer work or just take some time to have a break. One thing I enjoyed and took for granted after I finished my course before I got my job was not having any deadlines. It was nice sometimes to sleep in really late and not worry about handing in assignments or catching the bus. It has taught me how to relish and manage my free time even better now though lol x

        Liked by 1 person

      • danniijane says:

        I thought about going back to do a second degree for a job but I couldn’t bring myself too. In my last year I was in the uni library at midnight working, it’s tough. I agree even now I still don’t know exactly what to do or what I want, so at 18 it was hard to choose. Aaw well at least you got grades and learnt how to appreciate your free time. I think I’ve got worse at managing my time☺ In the future would you like a different career or job? Or like me you don’t know☺ and definitely lot of pressure. As I’m getting older I get dreaded questions daily haha x

        Liked by 1 person

      • Chanelle says:

        I know what I don’t want to do but opinions change so who knows, I could end somewhere I never even imagined. I’m just a girl with a crazy dream to be a popstar, but I know that might not happen so it’s important I have a stable job. Do you know which area you’d like to work in? What are you doing now? X

        Like

      • danniijane says:

        It’s not crazy. A lot of people want to do jobs like that, because it’s what you actually enjoy☺ Do you do singing classes or anything? I think you’re a smart, sweet girl, so people would love your personality alone. Well I wanted to teach english in a school, so I could have gone to do a second degree in teaching but I would have had to pay for it outright and it’s expensive. I’ve worked in schools since and didn’t like it at all😂 I’d love to work in a travel related job as I love all things travel. Atm I work in UK politics. X

        Liked by 1 person

      • Chanelle says:

        I was in a couple of choirs at school and I even signed up for vocal lessons at one point but nothing seemed to happen. I remember going to one or two but that’s it. I think I’ve got a lot of things to say and would love to be able to express my thoughts and feelings and comfort other people with music. Music is my happy place and I want it to be the same for someone else. It’s never been money or fame orientated. Travel would be such an interesting field to work in 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • danniijane says:

        That’s lovely. You can tell so much through music and feel so much from it too. I would love to be a great singer as I always thought it must be amazing to tell such stories through song☺ you’re still young so there’s no reason you couldn’t try and make it happen one day. I love travelling probably more than anything, but a lot of jobs are a couple of hours or so away with companies I like. Plus I’m tied to my job for 2 more years so I’ve got to decide next year what to do xx

        Liked by 1 person

  1. adeleinglasses says:

    This was an interesting read, though I couldn’t help but feel sad over some of your experiences. I always have had an ‘in the moment’ attitude, so I’d agree that you made the right decision at the time. I never knew whether I wanted to go to University or not, I just decided to follow the journey, and I ended up going. I enjoyed the additional studying and the achievement at the end of it, but I was also determined to land a career in an industry related to my degree. I couldn’t stand the thought that I was going to spend three years of my life obtaining the qualification, only to end up in a position that I didn’t necessarily need that for. It’s a shame that there isn’t more guidance throughout education, it can be difficult to know what would be best and/or which subjects to take, I felt like just another number at Uni and had no support in advancing towards my career at the end. Thankfully, I’m just about managing to pull it off myself!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Karen Rees says:

    I totally understand you Chanelle, though I have to say I disliked school so much that I couldn’t wait to leave as I had so many personal & health issues at the time. The ‘school days are the best days’ always made me wary that I was missing out and should be enjoying it more… and if that was the case would the rest of my life be even worse!! On the contrary I’ve found that I’ve so many things I would love to do in life that I’ve learnt to simply enjoy the experiences along with way without pressurising myself with academia. I know Uni wouldn’t have been for me – my anxiety etc would’ve been through the roof but thankfully I’ve a great local college that I’ve been to a few times on courses that have sparked my interest! It’s so lovely you’ve been able to be so open and honest about things 🙂 Thanks for sharing, what a great post XXXX

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chanelle says:

      I’m so sorry to hear you didn’t have the best time at school either Karen. I know what you mean about them being the best days, you think to yourself, “Am I missing something?” and “Why does everyone else seem so laid back?” I don’t think it makes you any less of a person if you don’t go to university. As long as people respect your decision either way. It’s nice that you’ve got a local college close by, I have something similar where I live too, but nothing else has jumped out at me to study so far. Thank you so much for reading! I’ve made Hey, It’s Okay… into a series of posts and I’ve really enjoyed writing them and being brutally honest. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      • Karen Rees says:

        Yes, exactly huni, that’s what I thought – it felt like I should be saying it too but I didn’t think like that at all 😦 I felt so much better leaving school and glad it was behind me to be honest! But like you say whether you go to uni or not doesn’t make you any more or less of a person, it’s just a preference – and I prefer not too! lol Can’t wait for the next installment, brilliant series chum, keep up the awesome blogging as it’s super inspiring 🙂 *hugs* XXXXXX

        Liked by 1 person

    • Chanelle says:

      That’s very true, we don’t all think the same way and we all have different ideas of what we want and what we deem as being successful. You shouldn’t be treated any differently because of a decision you made for yourself. Sure, people might not agree but it’s your life and it’s up to you to live it how you want 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. stephieestie says:

    Great post Chanelle! I can say that I relate to your sentiments on a certain level. I actually did like school and still love learning. I received my BA in English Lit, yet I wasn’t quite sure where my path was supposed to lead me. Like you, I admired people who knew what they wanted to do and went for it. After I received my degree, a few things happened and I decided to enroll in beauty school as I had always loved everything beauty. Yes, the waxing part is so not for me really, but it provided an experience. I haven’t had the best luck yet in being a service provider but I discovered that I do like teaching and educating people on all things beauty and I’ve begun to do this through blogging. I’m still trying to figure things out and sometimes, I feel like I am at that age where I should have things figured out, but I don’t. It’s not to say I will never get there but my timing is different than other people. Everyone has a different path to take and not everyone learns on an academic level but a technical one. I’m sorry you didn’t have the best experience during school but it seems like you’re doing pretty well right now. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chanelle says:

      I liked school up until the age of 11 haha! One thing I find interesting about writing these posts is the interaction I have in the comments. They’re always thought provoking and so kind. It’s nice that you found something you enjoy and you can combine the two, teaching people about beauty. It’s always reassuring when people tell me not to worry if I don’t have everything figured out and they are or were once in a similar position. Now I try to mainly take each day as it comes and think how can this benefit me in the future. I have goals I want to achieve and while I might not know what they are work-wise if I can be happy and succeed in other parts of my life I will find out.

      Liked by 1 person

      • stephieestie says:

        You’re definitely not alone and it is nice to hear the reality that people actually experience versus the glossed over version that is on social media. Great job with these posts. I find that praying helps me a bit. I leave it in God’s hands, trusting he knows what’s best for me. There have been plenty of times where I wanted something so bad and it never happened. I later learn that it wouldn’t have been the best thing for me. Keep reaching for your goals and always remember you have a great support group of bloggers you can turn to if you ever need help/advice. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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