Why I Left College After 5 Weeks…. and How to be a Trail Blazer


I’m re-reading a favourite book of mine, The Art of Non-Conformity, by Chris Guillebeau. It’s one of those I keep going back to. So full of wisdom and inspiration.

The concept of this book really resonates with me: Set your own rules, live the life you want and change the world.

It’s the idea that we can break out of the mold and actually create a life that fulfills us, which is a reason why I love the term ‘trail blazer’…..

I’ve always questioned the ‘traditional’ path. I distinctly remember the look on the face of my careers advisor at school when she realised I didn’t want to become a teacher/doctor/lawyer. I didn’t quite fit in, you know? Regardless, I ended up being wrangled into a course at university that seemed destined for mediocrity. Don’t get me wrong, it was a great course, but it just wasn’t a great course for me.

Within 5 weeks of starting I heard the voice of my intuition: “Um, Linz, you know this course is ridiculous right? You know you can do a whole lot more than this?”

I struggled with it for a few days. The more I questioned it, the more I realised that the reasons for staying were nothing to do with me. They were a whole bunch of ‘shoulds’:

  • I should stay because everyone knows you’re supposed to get a degree.
  • I should stay because I don’t want to let anyone down.
  • I should stay because I don’t know what to do next.
  • I should stay because I don’t want to be labelled a quitter.

Eventually I made the decision, and, 2 months after my awesome leaving party, we were back in the same restaurant celebrating my return.

It felt good. It felt right.

But that was just the beginning of a whole heap of important decisions I would be making that year.

I chose to follow my bliss. I surfed and surfed and surfed. I figured out what qualifications would actually serve me and I went out and got them. I worked 4 jobs and hustled till I had the cash to fund my next move. I got on a big plane and travelled the world. I met awesome folk and came back more inspired and empowered than ever.

Find me a college degree that gives you that.

I wanted to share this story with you today because I know that this message will mean something to you whether you have a business idea up your sleeve, a dream trip that you’ve never taken, or a trail blazing new path you want to walk down in life.

We make decisions every single day of our lives. Now is the time to realise that every single decision you make will shape your life.

My biggest piece of advice ?


There is a beautiful Chinese proverb that says:

The best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago. The second best time is now.

Photo Credit: Blinking

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