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The UnCollege Blog

What Advice Would You Give a College Dropout?

 There's a lot of advice I like to give to recent dropouts or students who are playing with the idea of dropping out. Here's the short list I think everyone should hear:

Take Action 

It’s easy to get caught up in an endless cycle of YouTube videos, articles, books, seminars and avoid actually taking action on your awesome ideas. 

The truth is some of your ideas might not go as planned, but they will definitely take you further than only consuming information and avoiding action.

I think motivational speaker Les Brown says it well:

“The graveyard is the richest place on earth, because it is here that you will find all the hopes and dreams that were never fulfilled, the books that were never written, the songs that were never sung, the inventions that were never shared, the cures that were never discovered, all because someone was too afraid to take that first step, keep with the problem, or determined to carry our their dream.”  

Don’t Make Decisions Based On Your Need For Approval

During my semester at college, I interviewed some students I did not know to figure out why they were in college. The hope was to have some more clarity on whether or not I should stay in college.  A reoccurring theme for their choices was that society or people in their family expected it of them. Many students stay in school because they want someone else’s approval.

Don’t make decisions based on your need for approval; make decisions that will help you become the best version of yourself. You may still feel the pressure of what others expect from you, but don’t let that be the force that controls your direction in life.

Document Everything 

As a dropout you won’t have a diploma to do the talking for you. Whatever adventure you embark on, be sure to document the process. Whether you are looking for a job, or booking speaking engagements, you will refer them to your Facebook, YouTube, and Medium page.

Also, it’s better to share something average than to not share at all. The only people judging are the one’s who never share their own ideas.

Know Your Reasons

Whether you dropped out to avoid debt, or because you were unchallenged in school, keep your top 3 reasons in mind. Between pressure from society and being broke at times and not knowing what’s next, dropping out can be a great challenge. Your reasons for dropping out in the first place will keep you focused on your goals instead of your fears.

It’s Dangerous To Receive Things You Didn’t Earn

If you didn’t earn it, you won’t be able to hold on to it. Looking for shortcuts and hacks to achieve your dreams won’t help you in the long run. Even if your strategy is to model someone else’s success, you will still have to get up and walk the path yourself. 

Learn to love the challenging journey. If it’s not challenging it’s hardly ever worth it.

Conclusion

These are the lessons I have learned so far, and I dropped out only a couple months ago. It’s still a process and I am learning everyday, but I don’t regret my decision at all.

My last piece of advice would be to know that just because the majority of people don’t agree with something, doesn’t mean they are right. And just because it’s uncomfortable at times, doesn’t mean it’s wrong.

Good luck!

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