Publish at March 23 2022 Updated March 30 2022

What are the opportunities after leaving school?

Regret, a sense of failure or hope... take action

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The starting point

It happens very often that a person participating in a training course feels at some point an imperative urge to want to stop studying, motivated by multiple factors. The question is whether this desire will remain simply transient and lived in silence as it well is, whether it will be communicated to others with no more than a complaint, or whether ultimately this wish will be so growing that it will be granted.

Whether this cessation of study is reflective, impulsive, or compelled is of great importance. The how of decision making is going to be about that. Here are some insights into what can happen:

  • If this cessation of studies was thoughtful, the person will also have to mourn not having been able to complete the desired training but, since she will have made the decision consciously, she will quickly take another, more suitable route. She will even feel a paradoxical sense of relief at no longer having to pursue the training that was experienced more as a chore than a good investment, as it did not allow her to move forward as planned.
  • If the interruption of studies was decided on a whim, it becomes more risky, as the person will need more time to adjust to the new situation. They have not anticipated what will happen next or projected themselves into a different future. They feel confused without deadlines. If the decision to quit was ever wrong, she will be more reluctant to start over because she will be gripped by doubts and a sense of guilt, regret, and failure for a long time.
  • If having put an end to one's studies responds to circumstances as diverse as family, personal, academic, economic and so many others experienced, equally constraining, there it becomes more complicated. The person will feel a sense of pain and failure for having had to stop because they had to and not because they wanted to. It will be necessary to rely on oneself, on new projects within one's reach to reconnect with the pleasure of learning and moving forward if not on the targeted road, on other secondary paths that can replace as far as possible, or who knows even exceed, the illusions already invested during the first choice.

In this decision to stop studying, we can ask ourselves if this is really what we want and give ourselves time to think about it. For each person and moment in the formative journey, this desire may be different and specific. Perhaps, for one person, it may correspond to a small cross that they feel is bigger and a small break or a gap year can change everything. For another, that worry will mean a redirection to another course. The one after that will just need to alternate training and work because she is bursting with energy and needs both environments to better advance and learn.

For those for whom the decision to quit has come well and truly, they will take forks in the road that are as interesting as they are surprising marking the non-linear trend of our personal, formative and professional biographies in the modern world. Quitting school is experienced in so many ways!

Stopping school can be almost a foregone conclusion when it happens to a person who has not yet acquired the basics. It will work against them too soon if learning stops abruptly and cannot be resumed. For some, deciding to stop studying will not be a failure in itself if they know they have the knowledge and resources to deal with it afterwards. For others, it is experienced as a major failure that affects their entire life, especially if this stop occurred at a crucial stage or when they were almost ready to complete a formative stage. For a large majority, repeatedly failing their studies has become the last straw. This has to do with their resilience, their frustration, but also due to the lack of resources available to them.

Both for studying as well as for learning, don't let it get us down if it's still necessary for us and if it's our choice to go on a bit more. Persist well since we will eventually succeed in finding a way to complete in the new centers, in the new formulas and forms of learning that arise.

I stopped studying, what to do?

What plays for or against as a result of not continuing our studies is our attitude. If we experienced it as a failure, what are we going to do to reverse this trend and bounce back?

The way we look at failure is to be reviewed from all angles to find one that fits us and it moves us forward on the road ahead. In the face of difficulties, as Isabelle Servant says, the options before us are those of allowing ourselves to be invaded by a defeatist, self-serving attitude or, on the contrary, becoming an actor of change. And that starts with healing the wound of failure, nurturing our inner selves and opening up to a new wave of opportunities that await us.

It's really like a new beginning to be more in tune with who we are and what we aspire to, away from impossible perfectionism. Goodbye to the morose spiral or the usual "I did it to please my family"! Welcome to this next step in our journey thinking solutions and new horizons! There are always alternative goals to reach our target in a different way!!

Already be in truth with yourself and your character strengths present or to be developed. To trust oneself again by remembering previously achieved goals, valuing the journey made and one's biography. Instead of goals that are too high, set gradual success goals to more easily reach the different stages.

And the way to get there is the one that will suit us the most by remembering that we have the right to make mistakes, to step back, to support, to ask for help and advice to get there!

So what do you say to reenergizing, getting to know yourself better and discovering yourself so that the road ahead for your own future seems clearer?

The list is developed:

  • learn a new language, go on a language trip. It will make you think and see the world and all its panoply of intense emotions, what it is to live differently (what is your relationship to life, studies, work, happiness, difficulties ...).

  • seek help and advice around you. You are entitled to what follow-up, you are entitled to what financial support if you integrate again some formative or professional pathway? (Garantie Jeunes, local mission, EPIDE...).

  • seek out an internship in a company or start-up to discover the realities of jobs, test yourself at different summer jobs.

  • become a volunteer and participate in a motivating project here or abroad that will make you want to create your own professionally.

  • doing yoga, it will air and strengthen body and mind to better decide.

  • being part of a choir, it  comforts to be part of a group where maybe others are in the same situation.

  • doing theater, it  gives the chance to embody several characters and better project yourself.

  • training in a trade, to the kitchen professions with the Thierry Marx schools, in a sector that recruits even without the baccalaureate like digital, new technologies.

  • register for the service Pôle Emploi existing in his country

  • why not become an entrepreneur (, CAP jeunes), testing the idea first in the field in an amateur and free version to then take the plunge (Olivier Roland, Sylvain Tillon...).

  • take a gap year to travel, to work or both together in one's country or abroad (VIE, VIA, WHV, Wwoofing...)

  • follow a orientation training (from DU, PAREO...) if you're still doubting whether to stop studying, test alternance.

As Galland says: "Self-definition is built, more than inherited."  Life is more about getting the best out of the worst than about complaining falsely about it and doing nothing to change that situation.

Find your inspiration, succumb to the experience of beauty, goodness and love for yourself and others! Life will never be the same again!

Between regrets, feelings of failure or hope after stopping your studies, turn instead to the last choice and leitmotiv of Sylvain Tillon:

"You can learn ANYTHING! You just have to be motivated, find the right method and devote a little time to it".

Image fromRepublica on Pixabay


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HUCHANT, E.; GUILLAUME, J-F. Jeunes et transitions. OEJAJ - Observatoire de l'Enfance, de la Jeunesse et de l'Aide à la Jeunesse. URL:

GLESS, E. I'm quitting my studies, what are my options? 10 tracks to follow.  L'Etudiant. URL:

GRENIER, C. When my child wants to take a break. URL:

NINA from Web Étudiant. Wanting to quit school 52 times (not feeling up to it). YouTube. URL:

The 3 questions to ask yourself before quitting school. URL:

ROCHE, J. I quit school... and I never regretted it! URL:,2016309.asp

SERVANT, I. Dream your life, live your dreams! 30 keys to take your place in THIS world. Editions Eyrolles.

SHEHADEH, M. Quitting school to work, good or bad idea? Welcome to the Jungle. URL:

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