2014: Looking Ahead

After the somewhat turbulent year that was 2013, unfortunately 2014 hasn’t started off the way I would have liked. I’ve experienced a low point recently; I spent the holidays feeling extremely depressed with a constant stream of negative thoughts running through my mind. I’m not like many other people. I prefer being at work; it provides me with a purpose and keeps me busy. If I have too much free time my mind ventures into dark places. I used to think there was an effective treatment to completely eradicate anxiety and depression but now I know that’s not the case. I have to be open to the fact that there will be difficult times and I’ll have to pick myself up again. This post is different from usual; on a personal level it’s meaningful and reflective. Here is my main goal for 2014:

Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice-this year I’m attempting to conquer my biggest fear by going to The College of Law and completing the professional qualifications required to be admitted as a practicing solicitor. As many of you know I do have a law degree which I completed at the end of 2012. The natural progression is often to undertake the 4 month (or 8 month part time equivalent) postgraduate course to be a lawyer. A reasonable person is likely to assume that after surviving five years at university, one would have the competence required to get through The College of Law. Unfortunately that wasn’t my belief. From the start of my law degree I was convinced that I wasn’t smart enough to be there. I felt continually inferior to the other law students which, in turn, made me really depressed. I lost the motivation to study or put in the required effort because I believed I didn’t belong. It seems like a miracle that I made it through These feelings of failure which have been present for my entire life are so strong that for years I ruled out The College of Law. It was a qualification that genius, confident people complete and it’s not for people like me. I told myself that having a law degree was beyond what I ever imagined for myself so I should be happy and leave it at that. I was so against law college that I continually got angry at anyone who’d suggest it.  No one understood.

P1100451

The above photo is from my university graduation: Bachelor of Commerce- Accounting with Bachelor of Laws (2012)

<It’s momentous that I am now enrolled in the Graduate Diploma of Legal practice to start on 20 January 2014. My anxiety is through the roof even thinking about it. My fears still remain but I’m pushing myself to try. What has changed? My current full time job gave me the motivation. I have a legal job, two of my colleagues have recently completed equivalent qualifications and I work directly with a solicitor. I don’t feel out of place. I am not a failure and I fit in there. Maybe there’s a small chance I can do this. My greatest fear is of being a student again. My time at university was extremely miserable. My anxiety and depression controlled my life to an unprecedented level. I hate the person I became. My life felt completely out of control and most of the time I didn’t know how I’d make it through even one more day. I did most of my study online and felt isolated from the world, rarely making it out of bed before 1pm. There are no words to explain how terrible it was. I am scared of feeling like that again and part of me feels like I’m jumping right back into the fire. However, I’m attempting to think positively and believe this time will be different. I’m looking at it rationally. For the first time ever I’ll be a part time student while maintaining my full time job. It’s just a course I’m completing on the side and won’t be my main focus. My primary role will still be work. That will provide me with frequent social interaction and a reason to get out of bed. Also, the consequences of failing are not as serious as failing a law degree, they wouldn’t ruin my life. At the end of the day, if the worst case scenario occurs, I already have qualifications and I still have my job which I enjoy greatly. I’m going to give it a go and see where it takes me. In summary, my goal is to be a fully qualified solicitor by the end of 2014.

76 thoughts on “2014: Looking Ahead

  1. Hi Imogen! Thank you for stopping by my blog. And most importantly, for sharing your thoughts.
    I have felt like that a lot, depressed with having a lot of free time, but now I cope with it by getting involved with different hobbies I'm passionate about.

    I'm sending you the best positive vibes so that you may succeed. And I hope that 2014 turns out to be the best year so far for you. 🙂

    Take care. Mirna

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  2. Good luck, dear! I know the feeling of isolation and misery much better than I'd like to admit. My first year of university, which I spend in Holland felt exactly the same!

    It is great that you're pushing yourself and I am sure you can do it and achieve your goals! After all the first step is the hardest one and you already made it by registering for the course! Plus you have the support of the lovely community you've built here! Hug you!

    Plami

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  3. Hello Imogen! after reading your post I would like to transmit all my support to you and to encourage in new projects. I am sure you will succeed this new year. Congratulations for your graduate diploma. I am sure you will be a great solicitor.Thanks for your lovely comment on my blog. If you want to follow each other just let me know I will be happy to be in contact with you. Kisses and best wishes for 2014:)

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  4. In this post shows your insecurity that makes you think in negative but also your extreme sensitivity.
    I believe that the strength that we find ourselves sometimes amazes us, but there's just get it out. Just commit and have confidence in ourselves and in our abilities. We often think of not being up and that others are better than us … maybe I'm just better at hiding lore fears,
    I am sure that your determination you will reach the goal that you set itself! In Italy we say “in the mouth of wolf” which means good luck!
    GOOD LUCK!
    Kisses

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  5. Don't worry that much about it! As you're saying, your life does not depend on it and it will most likely not be as hard or as frightening as you imagine now. Even though it's hard, try to go there with the attitude of “I'm already working in this area, I'm doing really great and I can do well here too.”
    At first, I was quite nervous about changing majors between BSc and MSc, but in the end it was quite smooth. 🙂 So I think that if you manage to overcome your past experience, you can finally make happy memories at school. I'll keep my fingers crossed for you, I'm sure you can do it! 🙂

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  6. Oh Imogen, I know the feeling. Fear is the biggest enemy and can ruin and break self esteem. I have a constant battle with it and it always wins the battle. However, I have decided for the first time to face it rather than give in . 2014 started with one of the toughest decision but I'm determined to listen to my heart rather than the mind and do the things that I want and makes me happy.

    Personally, online course don't work for me because I tried to study and it did not work out. I feel less motivated. I rather be in the classroom.

    Imogen, from experience I can only tell you this; do the things that makes you happy and what you want. If you fail, at least you tried and you can learn from your mistakes. Every job has a stressful situation and there are pressures but there are those that we don't mind because we are passionate about it and it is something that we want and that makes a massive difference.

    But above all remember one thing, don't you feel that you are not good enough or you cannot do it. The only difference is your journey is completely different to the others. It may take you longer to get to that position but you will get there because if there is a will there is always a way and it is up to you to find that way and make your dream come true.

    Hope you feel better and things will improve. If you need anything or want to talk to someone, please please please just drop me an email. You know that I'm just a message away.

    Take care darl, loads of love and hugs and prayers

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  7. This time will be different because you'll be working too. It'll be a completely different experience for you and I'm sure it'll be more positive than before. School definitely heightens my anxiety and I sometimes feel like I'm not as smart as some of the people in my classes, but I just kept trudging along and now I'm almost done. You can definitely do this! From what I've heard from talking to other graduate students, a lot of them feel inadequate and very stressed. Just know you're not alone and you can get this degree!

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  8. You wonderful, brave person taking on this challenge. You ARE good enough to be there Imogen- you wouldn't have got on otherwise! I am so glad you gained confidence. I remember how depressed you felt at the end of your course and I am so pleased you are challenging yourself! I remember the horror and misery of my PGCE in teaching- it was awful but worth it. And yet my first degree was wonderful! I guess you can never predict how it will go- you might love it this time!x

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