How Long 'Til I Learn From My Mistakes?

You should learn from your mistakes the moment you make them. So why don't I? How harsh do the consequences have to be before I try harder to improve?
Last year I failed History simply by leaving work too late. 

I've been spoilt by a lenient teacher, whose classes, ironically, are the only ones I've failed. He accepts work late, hates administration, and believes that the main thing is that all the work is handed in at the end. I like his outlook a lot, but it seems the lack of pressure has the wrong effect on me. I leave work because I know I can, because I should focus on other work that night, but there's a point where everything must be handed in.

I missed that cutoff with History, which meant I failed. Because of that, I had to go to "summer school" to make it up. I was pretty happy to do this since it meant I could continue into the third year of my degree and finish on time.

So did I learn from failing History? Nope.

I'm now in my third and final year. I was so focused on my recital that I thought I could leave my big essay until the end. And then suddenly I got an email saying semester results were in. And of course, my essay wasn't.

The class wasn't running again, so if I wanted to finish my degree, I'd have to do a whole extra year of that one class just to finish it off.

I was very lucky that my mark was close enough to a pass that I was allowed to submit the essay as "supplementary material" to get a pass and continue next semester. I was given two days to write the essay, and I wrote it in a night and a day. I sent it off, and the next day got an email saying my essay would have been marked High Distinction if it had been in on time. It's a shame that I have the skills but my self-discipline is still lagging.

The thought that I would have to do another year was so demoralising, it made me consider giving up. So I fought for the opportunity to hand in that essay, and I'm lucky that I can now finish my degree this semester. I have to remember that: I don't want to do another year. That's my motivation to get everything in on time.

I'm this close. If I can focus for the next few months, my degree will be done, and everything I'm looking forward to will be waiting for me. To celebrate the end of my degree, I hope to go to France and get better at the language. Around that time, I'll be becoming an uncle for the first time. When I return, I can spend the next year volunteering in childcare, completing my Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care, and I can take on more piano students to keep my head above water until I'm qualified to work as a childcare assistant or group leader.


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