SPM is not the end of your study life, it's the beginning. It's just like the word commencement, it means graduation ceremony but at the same time, it also meant the beginning.
In the chinese culture, we are always afraid of getting left behind, "kiasu" is the appropriate word to describe these people. They wanted to get a good head start in front of everyone else, since young, children were sent to various tuition in order to excel and stand out among the others.
You can't apply this in your after SPM life. Some students were so eager to continue their study that they go for the December or January intake right after SPM. In the western country, students take a gap year where they can work or take part in any voluntary before they go for further studies. They make good use of this year to really think of what they really wanted to do.
Now back to the main topic, why is that not getting good grades is not necessarily a bad thing?
I'm a university student, and I've seen many cases of Straight As students flunk all their subject, I've seen 10% of science student change course to Art stream, I've also seen student with only 1 A in ther SPM, but now taking master in Physics.
Why did these scenarios transpired?
They are a few factors.
1. The standard of SPM is really low compared to university's. In uni, A+ really means 90 above. When I was in secondary, I always get C in my chemistry, but I got an A in SPM.
2. In uni, you don't have a full guidance on how to do our homework/assignments. I still remember our Pendidikan Moral, we were taught to follow many rules in writing a good essay. That's why, when some students don't have guidance, they can't perform well, thanks to our Spoon Feeding education system.
3. The subjects also played important role in the grades. In secondary school, different type of students were force to take different type of subjects, this is why some of them can't score well. Like myself, I hated Add maths, I did badly, but in uni, I love sociology and I did very excellently.
4. The student himself/herself is another factor. Some students, when they enter uni life, they were affected by the environment. It depends on themselves on how they want to manage their time, financial, and student life.
I'm not saying that getting good grades in SPM is a bad thing, in fact it's the crucial key to enter your desired uni and get scholarships. It's a good thing. Just bear in mind that, you need to score consistently in every exam, or else your scholarship will be withdrawn.
To those who haven't thought of what you wanted to do, take your time, think about it, don't let your decision made by your relatives, your parents or even the society's pressure. Don't do engineering because your friends are doing it. I've read an article recently, engineering graduates applying for gym trainer jobs, not 1, but a lot. This is such a sad case. Hence, while thinking of what you really want, you may also want to consider the current job trend in order to avoid cases that I mentioned.
I hope this will help some of the still confused SPM leavers out there.