Now that I’ve come to terms with my results from the end of last year I’m developing a new attitude towards my work that I’ll try to briefly record here. What has not worked is expecting lots of myself. Saying that I am just being lazy and should just do it. Telling myself I can do more, believing tutors and parents who tell me to just do it, clearly hasn’t worked. Realistically, what I do do is all I am capable of doing, it seems, and I should accept that.

My attitude is made different by the fact that I now can’t do the very best thing I wanted to do, which is to stay at Oxford to do a masters, and that means that I don’t need a first anymore: going somewhere else, I think a decent 2:1 will be fine. I might get a first if I worked amazingly well but realistically I can’t do that, it’s outside of my ability range, and I should accept that. The result is the same and I end up happier for the lack of self-pressure. Oxford graduate study has plenty of disadvantages (orthodoxy being the biggest), so it’s not all that bad.

Is this giving up? No, it’s accepting the truth about my abilities. I’m going forward far more relaxed about things. Cheered, maybe I’ll do better after all. Hope I have expressed myself well here.