Is taking a drop year for better or for worse?

In Past
May 31, 2021

Let me rephrase this, would a man named Dhoni (wink, wink) rather eat chocolate which he doesn’t quite like, or go for the one he’s always wanted but there’s no surety that he’ll get that. He’s got some time and now he’ll have to decide which lane he’d want to choose.

making correct decisions

There is a beautiful poem by Robert Frost, ‘The Road Not Taken’. Read it if you haven’t already!!!!

There are a lot of things to think about before making this decision because obviously, you don’t want to regret it later. A drop year isn’t only about studying for one whole year but also to figuring out a lot of things like how to keep yourself motivated through all that and to understand that success isn’t guaranteed. You’ll have to keep yourself sane through all of this.

Let me tell you my story:

Welcome to the story of ups and well, a lot of downs. I was a science student who wasn’t into science AT ALL. No offense but all science students out there (my fam included) your subjects suckkkkk. After getting over with my boards which I surprisingly passed (lalalala), I obviously decided to drop any career options related to the science stream and to gather my thoughts and figure out what I wanted to do next, I made a very tough decision of taking a drop year.

It was difficult to see all of my friends posting pictures of various colleges and their supposedly “fun” life.

Bhai bohot fomo ho rha tha mujhe.

But I didn’t have much of a choice. There I was, sitting with my face buried in newspapers and books. It got pretty hopeless sometimes, especially, during the pandemic with the constant delay of our CLAT examination and if this wasn’t enough, let’s not forget the NLAT controversy (Between you and me, I guess NLAT was decided only to give all of us meme content).

After getting into a law school, quite honestly, I wasn’t satisfied. I thought I could’ve done much better but looking at the bigger picture, my college was prestigious. I couldn’t have imagined myself in a better place because even though I haven’t been to the campus yet, it still feels like home.

The lady in this picture depicts my condition. I, being 20-years-old, consider myself a senior citizen but trust me, these 18-year old kids who haven’t taken a gap year are great to be friends with.

drop year

Should I take a drop if things don’t turn out the way I had planned them to?

This question can be a tough one to crack.

Before that, there are some questions that you need to ask yourself:

  • Have you figured out what you’ll do if you take a drop year?
  • Will you be able to handle the external pressure which includes the taunts by neighbor aunties, your relatives, and especially your parents?
  • Will you be able to handle a hell lot of FOMO with your friends going off to college?
  • Will you be able to keep yourself motivated for this entire period?
  • Is it the only criteria for being where you want yourself to be?

If your answer to any of the above questions is a firm “NO” ,then probably, taking a gap year isn’t the right choice for you.

For me, the regret of not giving myself a fair chance at CLAT was the last thing I wanted in life and so I took this decision. It turned out to be good for me because in this one year I gained experience about various aspects of life and learned to deal with pressure situations, but I was definitely playing at a very high-risk factor which may not be correct for the majority of the students. Focusing and prioritizing your mental health is of utmost importance in life and I realized it the hard way.

maana ki mushkil hai safar, par sun o musaafir;
o kaheen agar too ruka to manzil aayegi na phir

For this question of a drop year, there is no definite answer as it is surrounded by a lot of subjectivity. The things which affect your judgment can be external factors and most of them are misconceptions.

Let’s discuss some misconceptions about a gap year:

  • Taking a gap year is going to affect your future placements (absolute nonsense).
  • Taking a gap year will make you a couch potato (well, not if you work on yourself daily).
  • Taking a gap year puts unlimited pressure on you (meditate 10 mins every day and you’re good to go)
  • Taking a gap year means zero motivation at a point (naa huh, look for motivation every day, some people have reached one of the best law schools in the country after a year to themselves).

Everyone has different views on life. They have different ideas, abilities, and thoughts on what is right and wrong in life. The more time you spend with yourself, the more clarity you get. There will be a time for action. Don’t be in a hurry.  

Why are you considering taking a drop year? Share with us in the comments!

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