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Paying the Price for My College Degree. A Guest Post by EMILY T.

EMILY may look as though life has incessantly handed her goodies. Well, read what she writes here about paying the price!

EMILY may look as though life has always handed her goodies. Well, read  here about the price she has paid for college!

Hooray! Our first Blog-Buddy has taken me up on my invitation to guest post about paying the price for what we get.

Even things that sound so easy… to others. Acknowledging this helps keep a person to live in human-based spirituality, growing as fast as ever a person can.

By all means, Blog-Buddies, check out many ideas for guest posts summarized in Are You Willing to Pay the Price Spiritually? Perspective from RES. Possible ideas include whatever YOU might think of, plus additional ideas you will find there in some of the comments after the main article.

Once again, EMILY T. from our RES Community Enlightenment Life List shows her leadership.

Thanks so much, EMILY. (And I’m more thrilled than ever that you will be crossing the pond to participate in my first-ever workshop this July on The New Strong. 🙂 )

Paying a Certain Kind of Price for Six Years.

Hmm, I could do a paying the price-type guest post on gaining a degree part-time! Especially now that I’ve finally graduated. After 6 years.

To start with, here are 10 ways that I paid, and paid, and paid, during those years.

  1. Having to read so many books (not all of them interesting) in your spare time when all you want to do is read blogs on the internet.
  2. Staying up late and sometimes pulling all-nighters to make sure that essay is submitted. So much missed sleep!
  3. Using up all your holiday days from work on study days and having to fit real holidays around module exams and essay dates.
  4. Being on a business trip in Rwanda and spending your day off working on your memory project instead of getting to see the gorillas in the national park.
  5. I was so not interested in a particular memory project, I had to use a random number generator to pick a sub-topic. Just so I would just get on with it!
  6. Having friends forget you exist and forgetting to invite you to events and parties. Having to remind friends I’m back now and be super-proactive about arranging friend dates.
  7. Having relatives not understand that weekends are not free time. Also complaining that they don’t get to see you. And that you don’t go “home” often enough (to Ireland, when you live in England). Being told that “All you care about is yourself”!
  8. Not seeing your partner in the evenings… until you’ve finished that chapter.
  9. Travelling an hour to a tutorial, then finding that only two people turned up anyway. So much for academic discussion!
  10. Feeling like giving up (or just postponing this module, just for a few months) and having to slog through arguments you find idiotic or shortsighted instead of learning French. LOL.

Can You Appreciate My Longing to Simply Relax and Study Some French?

I’m reminded of a session with Rose where it was coming up to my exams and all I wanted to do was learn French instead.

Rose compared me to a middle-aged man wanting the fast, shiny and red convertible car RIGHT NOW!

Quel dommage! (French for “Sometimes this felt like my heroic personal tragedy!”)

Then Came the Crazy Prices Related to Career

Not being able to advance in your career in the meantime — that also turned out, ironically, to be part of the price I paid for supporting myself and putting myself through school part-time.

Why couldn’t I move jobs? I needed to ensure that I would:

  • Be able to take time off
  • Have flexible hours
  • And not need to spend a lot of time learning in my day job (since so much brain power was being used up in the evenings).

At the same time, I was not be seen as committed to the day job since my degree was in a completely different field, which I had chosen before getting the day job.

Here’s the clincher: Eventually I got so turned off by the whole thing that I no longer wanted a career in the subject I was studying.

Phew! And Worth It!

I have graduated now.

Of course, there were many benefits and enjoyable things, and not everyone will experience the same. But everything I’ve described above was the price that I had to pay.

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  1. 1
    Sarah says:

    Ahh! Emily!

    First: yayyy, excited to meet you at The New Strong, in July. 🙂 and Congrats on finishing your degree!!

  2. 2
    Sarah says:

    Second: Yikes, can I relate to so much of what you’re saying!

    The “I soooo just want to study French” (well, ballet and dressage, for me).

    The seeming uncommitted to (in my case, potential) employers because of the apparent field mismatch.

  3. 3
    Sarah says:

    The not-even-sure-I-want-this-anymore feeling about the degree/new field (from time to time, anyway).

  4. 4
    Sarah says:

    And the worst–#7–weekends are not free time!

    (Really, nothing is automatically free time!)

    And it is not intended as a personal affront that I cannot spend them socializing.

    And the belly-laugh-comical quality of the accusation “All you think of is yourself!”

  5. 5
    Sarah says:

    So glad there have also been lots of enjoyable things and benefits for you, as well, Emily. I can also relate to that. 🙂

    But you’re right! There is always a price.

  6. 6
    Kylie says:

    Emily, this brings back memories of my grad school days. I’m still paying that price literally–one you don’t mention: massive student loan debt. I certainly wondered at points along the way if the price was worth it, but it definitely was. I can also relate to wanting to simply relax and learn some French. Ha ha! Too many people, this would not be relaxing.

  7. 7
    Emily T says:

    Sarah, Yay!! So excited to meet you too! 😀

  8. 8
    Emily T says:

    Kylie,

    I was very lucky that I was working at the same time and that my particular institution was part subsidised by the UK government (At least until the conservatives took over).

    This meant that I paid by direct debit each month for my modules, which did mean I had no savings when I graduated but also meant that I had no student debt for this course.

    A rare and very lucky situation to be in I am aware.

  9. 9
    Emily T says:

    I did attend a different UK institution for 3 months when I was 19 and I do still have some student loan debt left from those 3 months that I have yet to pay off (7 years later).

    This is because in the UK they only take 9% of your salary each month to go towards it and for the first three years I didn’t even earn enough to start paying it. Again this is a very lucky situation (the 9% limit) compared to other situations.

  10. 10
    Kira says:

    Good post, Emily!

  11. 11
    Kira says:

    It doesn’t quite fit this discussion, but I have had occasional dreams in which I was back in college; there wasn’t enough time for me to study everything I wanted to (including French!), and my depression limited my ability to take classes by my senior year.

  12. 12
    Brandi says:

    Very cool post Emily. Thanks for sharing your story.

  13. 13
    David B says:

    I can sure relate.

    In my more recent case of grad school, I took a compressed program with classes 6 days a week. It was intense. Half the class had dropped out by the half way point.

    I even had to drop an evening study class as there was essays most nights.

  14. 14
    David B says:

    I can relate to many of the points, but couldn’t stay up late as there was no opportunity to sleep in. The one day off required homework, laundry, and a dinner date with my partner. It was virtually non-stop.

    Happily, only one course was a little lame. Most of the content was fascinating.

  15. 15
    David B says:

    Other costs – letting go of my business, friendships back home, downsizing possessions, no personal time…

    There wasn’t even time to digest a major change in consciousness that took place during. (laughs)

  16. 16
    Lilian says:

    You know, the post from Emily and David’s comments demonstrate why I like the blog so much.

    Both people are in enlightenment, they’ve undergone ages of spiritual growth… but still, they take the time to do silly human level educational courses. 🙂

  17. 17
    Lilian says:

    I say silly, because plenty of people might suggest human level learning becomes redundant once you see all the energy and become evolved and whatnot.

  18. 18

    Oopsie, last night while editing EMILY T’s blog post, I put in a little joke.

    It was not from her.

    So I’m flagging it in bold green in the post and ‘fessing up.

  19. 19

    in case you’re wondering, Blog-Buddies, I asked permission to blast through her so-British modesty and tell you that she just got a new job.

    A 75% salary increase!

    Also, it’s a position which pays for lots of training for its staff!

  20. 20

    The company found EMILT T. Yes they found me on Linkedin, as her previous role and this new role are, as she puts it, “quite niche data roles.”

    Sometimes paying the price comes with a nice reimbursement!

  21. 21
    Kylie says:

    Congratulations Emily!!! That’s awesome. And, so well deserved.

  22. 22
    Christine says:

    It’s nice to know that things like this can still happen, and employers sometimes actually find you!

  23. 23
    Kylie says:

    Sarah and Emily I’ll be seeing you at the workshop too. I just decided to go. Woo hoo!

  24. 24
    Isabella C. says:

    Emily, so impressive! I’m glad you wrote this. We’ve all had to ‘pay the price’ one way or another, and life moves a lot faster when you accept you’re going to have to work hard for some things, make some sacrifices and take some risks, and put yourself out there to get what you want.

    Actually it IS fair!

  25. 25
    Isabella C. says:

    I used to blame myself for not working hard, when it turns out I really just wasn’t very effective.

    I hope anyone who has self-esteem problems around getting things done, accomplishing things, and success in society considers this. You might have been working very hard, trying valiantly, but not getting far because of STUFF.

    Can be especially relevant if you’ve done drugs in the past, I think. Don’t do drugs, kids!

  26. 26
    Isabella C. says:

    And if you have, no regrets! Get some healing. You deserve it and it’s possible now, so why bother with such suffering?

  27. 27
    Kira says:

    Congrats for the job, Emily!

  28. 28
    Lilian says:

    I agree Isabella. Paying the price doesn’t necessarily mean bruce force will power. After getting certain types of STUFF removed we’re way more effective!

  29. 29
    Julie says:

    Congratulations on your graduation and new job, Emily!

    And great post.

  30. 30
    Julie says:

    David B,

    #15 – This has been the case for me too. Each time of a big spiritual upgrade has come during a time when objective reality claimed my attention.

    It would have been nice to have the downtime to process and enjoy the upgrade. But life had other plans.

  31. 31
    Irene says:

    This is a great story! Congratlations on the degree and the new job, Emily T.

    Real life takes work and you showcase that beautifully.

  32. 32
    Irene says:

    Lilian, great observation in #16! I love getting these glimpses of real life in enlightenment too. 🙂

  33. 33
    Irene says:

    Isabella C, #25-26 resonates so strongly with me!

    I struggle with the concept of “paying the price” because it takes me back to beating myself up about not being able to make the things I wanted happen no matter how hard I tried.

  34. 34
    Irene says:

    I was working really hard at life and being pretty darn effective, all things considered.

    But things like Stuff and lack of skills (like empath skills) and other things I don’t entirely understand (like karma and life contracts) were getting in the way.

  35. 35
    Irene says:

    Healing is the way to go! And understanding the reasons why it didn’t work before is entirely unnecessary, thank goodness!

  36. 36
    Emily T says:

    Thanks Kylie, Christine, Julie, Kira and Irene, Brandi and Isabella!

  37. 37
    Emily T says:

    I am so excited to meet everyone who’s going to the New Strong workshop too. I am counting down the days!

  38. 38
    Emily T says:

    Isabella, for comments 26 and 27, yes sessions with Rose regarding time management, motivation and also pushing myself (and resisting my own efforts) were so helpful in ensuring I stayed the course!

    Rose also gave me so many tips to be more effective in objective reality too!

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