What to do next? My thoughts on my masters, uni life and where I want to go next

This time last year I was having a mad panic. I didn’t know what I wanted to do with life. I thought I needed it figured out and I felt so lost. People around me seemed to know what they were doing next; going on to their LPC’s (solicitor training), going into real jobs, travelling. Everyone seemed to have some kind of plan. I did not.

I was really enjoying writing my dissertation (I know, I’m crazy) so why not do a masters? Researching is something I enjoy doing and it gives me another year to figure everything out. Because I’d done my undergrad in Law, I thought I might as well do my masters in the same subject. I didn’t really research much into what other masters are out there and decided to stay at the same university (mainly because I get a 20% discount which saves me like 2 grand!).

A year later, 4 months into my masters, and I hate it. I’ve come to the conclusion that Law isn’t what I want to do. I have no intention of practicing and even researching it really. Don’t get me wrong, I find some of it still incredibly interesting, especially my area of research media law. BUT I don’t want to spend the rest of my life doing it. To be honest, I’m struggling to motivate myself to do it till September. I rushed my choice of subject, and choice of uni.

The course just is not for me. I’m only in one day a week which sounds great but has seriously impacted my motivation. I’m good at self motivation but I really miss going into uni, seeing people off my course and properly being able to discuss things. Even though I know I could contact people on the course and my tutors outside of that day, it still isn’t the same. I don’t always want an answer to a specific question, it’s just the general atmosphere.

At most, I’m in uni for 4 hours WHICH IS NOTHING. I was so used to being in most days and had a real sense of community. It seems that most people on my course don’t want to make friends. Don’t get me wrong, there are some lovely people on the course who I get on with, but there isn’t that same feel that I had in undergrad. I feel isolated within uni and it doesn’t actually feel like I’m part of anything. The course feels so disjointed because I’m only in for 3 weeks then you have a reading week.

For someone who is quite self motivated and determined, my masters has left me feeling flat. I don’t have a passion for many of the modules and even the one’s I do I still don’t feel a buzz about it. In undergrad I barely missed anything; I was that person who showed up to everything. When I didn’t, I felt a huge sense of guilt (even though it was usually due to being ill). This year I miss things constantly and don’t even feel guilty about it. I know it’s stupid to not go in and I know it will probably impact my grades but I just cannot bring myself to go in.

What I really want to do is journalism and broadcasting. It’s something I’ve loved since I was little but because a lot of my family were and are in the industry, they wanted me to experience something different. Alas, I’ve come full circle and still really want to pursue a career in this area. Annoyingly, I’ve found the perfect course which would mean I could still do the same research I’m doing now but also widen my skills in digital journalism. Sadly, I can’t change courses now as it’s too late and would be waaaay too expensive.

For a while, I’ve been kicking myself for not doing more research into what I actually want to do and just jumping into the easy option (if you can call a law masters an easy option!). But beating myself up about it isn’t going to help anyone and is just going to make me feel even worse about the whole situation. Instead I’m trying to be proactive and figure out how to get to where I want to be.

I considered dropping out. It seemed like the only option. I hated the course so why not just leave. Well, mainly because it would be a huge waste of money and I can’t get student finance to do another masters. And I’d have to start paying pack my loan now which isn’t really an option. I know that it’s not the best reason to carry on with something I don’t like, but hey at least it’s a reason.

I tried changing course. Turned out, student finance got in the way and I can’t do that. But at least I tried. Plus, I can still do my dissertation in an area I’m interested in which is something.

I’m looking for work experience in the field I want to go in. I may not have the ideal training needed for what I want to do but I can try and get work experience. The aim is to build my skills and contacts to try and get in. I’ve found a paid training course I really want to do but I know it’s very selective. But hey, you’ve gotta try haven’t you! Applications open next month so I’m going to have a go. If I don’t get that, I’ll apply next year and try and get relevant work to help strengthen the application.

Basically, this post is a little reminder to myself and to you guys that it’s okay to not know where you’re going. I’m only 21. It’s okay to not have a plan. It’s okay to change my plans and change what I want to do in life. You don’t need to have it all figured out. All I do know is that I don’t want to be stuck doing something I don’t enjoy and which I dread. So whatever I do, I’m going to make sure I don’t get stuck.

Sorry for a little brain dump there but I find writing these kind of posts really helps me figure out where I’m going. If you have any tips whatsoever or just comments that you’re in the same boat, please leave them down below!