From a very young age, we have been fed the narrative that it is off to college you go once you finish high school. Life after high school can be a scary journey filled with bucket loads of excitement and anxiousness about what the future holds for you. From making life-changing career choices to ensuring you work really hard for your grades to meet the entry-level requirement. With the hope that you get into your college of choice. Not to mention the amounting pressure from family to choose a ‘safe’ degree or even friends. So, what to do if you Failed in College? We will discuss this in the article further.
However, if you find yourself reading this and can relate to the content, you have made it! The pressure of college can feel like you are climbing a never-ending uphill battle. Many do not surmount the pressure and experience failure. This is normal, but we live in a society that tells you that you get a 9-to-5 job and settle down once you have completed college. Without any hiccups along the way. So what happens when along with that journey, you come across a stumbling block and trip into a different narrative; you failed in college. Something I am quite sure no one anticipates will happen to them until it does. This can be a daunting experience to go through, but worry not, I have a written something for you—a few pieces of advice to guide you through all of your worries.
What To Do If You Failed In College?
First and foremost, everything will be okay even if it does not indicate it will be. No matter what the outcome is, take a deep breath in and out. Relax, you will be just fine. Everything will work out for good.
- Self-reflection, will you grow or let go?
One of the biggest questions you will ask yourself in college is; am I meant to be pursuing this degree? Whether it be from pulling your hair out due to work stress or feeling out of place, it will arise. It is up to you to figure out which one applies to you. This can happen through the beautiful art of self-reflection that many of us hate going through. We loathe this process because it requires us to dig deep within ourselves and speak to the parts we wish to ignore. However, if you are failing in college, I recommend taking some time out to sit with yourself and reflect on what exactly you want. Are you happy doing the degree? Is it where you should be? Do you want to switch courses? Consider talking to your department head about the possibility of choosing a new career path. Or even your professors on where you could improve if you so wish to stay in the program. Figure out what exactly went wrong and find a solution. Every problem has a solution, so solve it. There is no need to stay in a degree you are not interested in, which in return will fail. Or, if you are struggling academically, take the initiative in asking for guidance from professors with years of experience in education. Work through the issue and see what best suits your future.
- Accept what has happened.
Possibly the hardest pill to swallow is to realize that what has transpired happened. Especially when you hoped to receive a more positive outcome, but everything happens for a reason. The reason may not be clear during that moment, but soon enough, you will understand why it was you who had to experience that failure to elevate you to a higher calling of self. In life, when we encounter challenging situations that require growth into a deeper level of self, we will feel a shift. A shift that may not always be favorable. Sometimes the very failure that made you doubt yourself will be your greatest lesson to take notes from. Notes that will aid you in the future to avoid making the very mistakes that put you in that situation. We never learn our best lessons of life through the easy times, but we learn and gain an astronomical amount of knowledge from the tough times. Hard times build character, and in exchange, we step into becoming the very person we are destined to be for a higher calling in life. So, do not feel discouraged by the outcome, but look forward to what is ahead of you, for it will serve you well. Accept what has happened to take the necessary step needed to navigate your next challenge. Cry, scream and be sad for a moment but feeling sorry for yourself must have an expiry date. Once it has passed, move onto something fresh and start anew.
- Look at the factors that contributed to the failure.
I could list an endless amount of reasons why someone may fail at something, but the truth is, this part is all about what you need to do. When we fail, it allows us to go back to the drawing board to see what worked and what did not work, leading to the failing point. Again, it is okay. Let us learn from these mistakes. Looking back at your routine, did it make sense to the goals you had set for yourself? Were you diligent in scheduling enough time to study? Were you disciplined enough when it came to studying? Did your lifestyle accommodate your schooling? Anything could be possible. So the question is, how much of what you have done previously needs to change? Do you see results? If not, change it.
Find learning techniques that make sense to you to achieve your desired study goals. If you were a person who studied last minute, maybe consider starting your studying process a week or two in advance to sponge as much information as possible. Do you prefer studying during the day or at night? When do you focus the most? Do you prefer a quiet area or do you like listening to music? These questions will guide you towards finding an appropriate way of studying. Make a Dos and Don’ts list for your studying guide that will help you discover small areas to improve your schooling experience. This is simply all about understanding yourself more above everything else.
Once you understand what works for you, it can assist you in moving forward to a better outcome academically. Never be afraid of exploring new ways to reach your academic goals because, in the end, you want what is best for you to achieve your dream of receiving a degree. Change your studying technique, discipline yourself to work harder, and time block your studying period without distractions so you can focus on the task at hand. Maybe sleeping more hours to rest your body and mind could assist with your studying. Drinking more water and eating healthier could contribute to a productive mind. Anything that needs to be done does it.
- Surround yourself with a support system.
I always say a degree is a group assignment. And no, I do not mean everyone writes your assignments, or you fake each other’s identity to write an exam on behalf of someone else. But rather, your degree is an effort of many people who are open and willing to help you when you are struggling academically. Please, do not be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Whenever you find yourself drowning and overwhelmed, reach out to somebody who may have cracked the code with that particular area you are battling to grasp. There is no shame in admitting you do not understand something. We are all students of life and should thrive on wanting to absorb as much information as possible.
But to be able to reach out, you need to be intentional about creating a circle of friends or reliable classmates who you know you can depend on during troubled times. A support system will hold you up when you feel like falling. They will hold your hand in your time of need and hold you accountable to push harder to accomplish your academic goals. Never doubt the power of a positive influence around you, for they will spark a light inside of you to keep marching on and moving up. Always inform your circle where you stand; emotionally, psychologically, mentally, and academically. This way, they will understand you more as a person and step in where they can assist you. Everyone needs someone. College is too big of a challenge to tackle alone. Get an enthusiastic bunch of go-getters who will want to get on this crazy rollercoaster ride with you and enjoy the process. Pick your friends wisely. Choose people who want to see you succeed and not succumb to the pressures college brings.
- Mental health is important.
Failing is emotionally taxing, which can cause an incredible amount of mental scaring in the process. Mental health is something to be taken very seriously, especially when living in a day and age where social pressures are at an all-time peak. Do not allow your failure to define you and cause harm to you emotionally. Take that moment of failure to feel, heal and deal. And after that, continue with your life. Do not sink in the sadness and let it mold in your mind to make you believe you are incapable of being excellent because you are. When work becomes overwhelming, and the school continues to pile on the pressure, find fulfilling things that bring peace of mind to your mental health and soul.
It is essential to look for ways to take your mind of the stress by discovering what you like. It may be going for a; walk, going to the gym, meditation, hanging out with friends, or even going to a restaurant to listen to jazz music. Do what makes you feel good. As a result, you will be giving your mind exactly what it deserves; balance and harmony. Being isolated by yourself could cause you to overthink everything and press you down into a dark space. Try by any means to resist that from happening. Small efforts like making your bed in the morning, taking a shower, or cleaning your room could make a world’s difference in conquering your mental health.
Being in a clean environment could contribute to a clearer mind and a more positive outlook. But through it, all, do not hesitate to seek professional help if needed. Contact your department counselor or nurse to guide you through the possible steps needed to ensure your mental health is taken care of. Ask for suggestions from friends and family to recommend doctors or activities that will help you as well. Your friends and family are there for you. Share what you are experiencing and lean on them for emotional support. They will be there for you.
- You tried once, you can try again.
Always remember; never a failure, always a lesson. Let that be your mantra whenever life circumstances get tough. Firstly, do not give up too easily on your degree because you failed. There is still a chance to redeem yourself and complete this big task. Giving up should never be an option unless there are no other options to take, which is hardly ever the case. Secondly, be kinder to yourself and understand no walk of life is alike. Be kind to yourself and never compare yourself to someone else who has passed. It will not be fair on you. As a student, everyone will have their moment of failure. It is inevitable.
It is all about what you do with that moment. Do you flip it or flop it? The choice is yours. It is up to you to make the best out of any situation by not being quick to throw in the towel when the going gets tough. Life goes on; it will not stop there; it will get better. Think about it this way. If you give up now, things will get worse. You have got to keep moving forward, and eventually, you will see the results you want. It is not about how many times you fall but how many times you get up. Every single time you get up, that is one upon the number of falls you have taken.
That should be enough to indicate that you are; persistent, a preserver, and resilient, for no challenge is greater than your purpose. Always pick yourself up one more time and see where it takes you. Try, try and try again until you see improvement. The more you try, the more you succeed and find guaranteed positive outcomes simply because you refused to allow the situation to define you. Define yourself by stepping up to the challenge by being relentless.
This is by no means the manual that possesses all of the correct answers, but it is a collection of words that could be helpful towards your journey. Failing in college will not stop you from living. So, look up and be positive about finding out how you can navigate through this experience alongside the advice given to you here. You have got this!
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