In the last six months or possibly more, I have had nightmares with one recurring theme: exams. These nightmares have a similar narrative: I am about to give my exams when something goes wrong. It is my fault.
- I haven’t studied enough.
- I have failed even before I start my exams.
- I arrive in an exam center in Mumbai for an exam supposed to take place in Auckland.
- I am three hours late for a two hour long exam.
The nightmares end by jolting me awake in the morning. Minutes pass. I remember with relief that I don’t have to give exams anymore. I am not learning to give exams anymore. I wonder why I keep having these kinds of nightmares though.
I was always one of the smartest in my class. I would not hate giving exams, I would be prepared and focused. Motivated and ready to tackle my next challenge. They were the cause of some fond memories from my school & college days.
- The last day at my third grade school when my dad and my best friends dad tallied our scores.
- Solving of my older brother’s math problems with ease while he looked on.
- Walking on the stage to get awards in my school 7th and 8th grade.
- My undergraduate years where I explained electronics to my classmates.
Yes, all memories had an audience. Someone to recognize my brilliance. Also, these memories were of a period at which I was great at whatever I was doing.
I was booksmart. Exams & learning was something I was always great at. Thinking back, it might have been the only thing I was good at, in that particular time period.
It might have been my whole identity.
Part of being a developer is constantly learning new programming languages and principles. I am currently trying to learn Android development.
Some days I am good. Most days, I struggle. I read stuff but my brain just doesn’t connect. The ease with which I used to learn things is gone, replaced by irritation & confusion.
I don’t not as intelligent as I used to be. My brain doesn’t have juice anymore.
I feel like I had the potential but it has wilted away.
I wonder how could this happen.
Is it age? Cause that is preposterous, I am only 25.
Or Am I just lazy?
I remember listening to a podcast in which a line was spoken. I am paraphrasing
‘I feel like I have to keep learning something new.’Unknown Podcast
I don’t remember which podcast I heard it or how long ago. I just related to what was said.
One of few new things I discovered an affinity towards now is economics. I read a book a while ago on the American Electric Grid system. I read a book about handling finances and I also listen to Planet Money podcast. All of which have introduced me to an area that I have never given much thought to.
I am learning new languages, both computer and spoken language. I am trying my hand on writing more, giving serious thought (so far) on a novella. I have even started learning techniques on photo editing.
I feel like I am doing more than enough. Everywhere.
Yet, without exams at the end of a term, I wonder what exactly am I learning for?