5 stages of grief (NTU)Had the opportunity to meet a classmate from polytechnic the other day who is now studying in the same university as I am. Judging from his Facebook status messages along with others from my other ex classmates has me seeing that they are going through what I went through when I first started school.
Interestingly, Kübler-Ross’ model for 5 stages of grief seems to apply greatly here.
DenialYou always enter a university with preconceived notions about what its supposed to be. There is nothing wrong with that, because we’re all subject to marketing.
However, to not even your basic impression of a university just doesn’t cut it.
So you spend the beginning few days of school and prior during orientation hoping that whatever that is happening is just temporary and not the truth.
That maybe the lecturers would get better. That the tutorials would be more interesting. That labs would be more open to alternative implementations.
AngerSo you get pissed when all that doesn’t happen and wake up to the reality that what you’re facing is gonna be for the next 4 years of your miserable life.
You start to lash out at any perceivable cause of your anger. Be it administration, the huge influx of foreign students and any general incompetencies of your educators.
You stereotype, hold bias and all that stuff.
BargainingAnger only lasts that much. No point being pissy all the time and affecting the moods of your close friends. So you try to rationalize that maybe you are having unrealistic expectations.
You try to recalibrate your expectations of things and try to make sense of why things are the way it is and try to make do with what you got.
DepressionHowever, bargaining only works if there is a reciprocation. So eventually, after having everything taken away from you, you fall into depression. Seeing no point in attending lectures, or trying hard enough.
You decide you need a break, you take an industrial attachment, you try for exchange, whatever it is to get out of this godforsaken place.
AcceptanceFinally after gaining some perspective and having progressed through half your life at the university, you come to the unexpected conclusion that this is what it is.
You begin to do better. You adapt to the idiosyncrasies of the way thing are and you deal. You figure out the loopholes and everything that makes it tick.
You find motivation in the things that make you happy, creating your own happiness within the system.