Surviving High School

“Education is what survives when what has been learned has been forgotten”                 -BF Skinner

Hello everyone, hope you’re doing well. Now, this isn’t really common knowledge but I am going to be graduating from high school in the next few months and I thought with the new semester on the horizon it would be a good idea to share some of top tips for surviving the next four years of your life. And I suppose these tips can really be applied to any educational environment, but I only have high school experience, so that’s what you’re gonna get.

  1. Be in class

Sounds really simple right? But this one is super important. I get it, things happen, you get sick or you gotta go to that cousin’s wedding, whatever. But if you can, be in class as much as possible. Taking a few days off here and there is perfectly fine but don’t make a habit of skipping out on school, because I can guarantee that you’ll end up paying for it like I did. When I was in my junior year, my health really took a turn for the worst and I was barely in school that year. As a result, I fell behind and by the end of it I was grabbing at straws trying to make sure I passed all of courses. It’s not fun, and my absenteeism only added to all the stress. Being in class guarantees a better understanding of the course material, plus attendance actually does affect your grade, I learned this the hard way so really it’s in your best interest to be in class as much as you’re able to.

  1. Try to stay away from drama

Now high school isn’t the social rollercoaster it’s made out to be in the media, that’s a given. But there’s always going to be drama going on around, and the best thing you can do is to keep out of it if you can. Because with drama, comes unnecessary stress and it takes your focus away from your academics which are more important in the long run. So keep clear of drama and people who like to cause it. Surround yourself with people who are calm and relaxed and can be a positive influence on you, it’ll keep your mind at ease and give you a sort of safety net to turn to if things get rough and you need to lean on someone.

  1. There’s no need to be self conscious

No one cares that you’ve worn that shirt two days in a row, or that you have a pink panda pencil case. Don’t worry or pay attention to what others think, chances are they probably didn’t even notice whatever is making you self conscious. People are too caught up in their own worlds, focusing on their work and their day; so much so that they didn’t just see you walk into that door. People literally do not pay attention, and while it’s easier said than done, you really don’t need to be so self conscious, because no one really cares about the small details. This is especially for freshman, I remember I was literally terrified of messing up my first year of high school, but as I got older I realized that all the little stuff I focus on daily literally means nothing to the person who just saw me trip on my way out of class. It’s okay to be nervous and a little self conscious, but don’t let that rule your life. This is really cheesy but just be yourself and it’ll be alright.

  1. Be nice to your teachers

This one’s simple but it goes a long way. Your teachers are stressed too; they have hundreds of students to take care of, and hundreds of papers and assignments to mark and deadlines to meet too. So be nice to them, greet them and say goodbye on your way out, ask how their day is going, trust me they’ll appreciate the sentiment because a little goes a long way.

  1. Hand in assignments on time

Try to be as punctual as possible, and try not to miss assignments or fall behind on work. Not only does this help to minimize your stress, but it also builds rapport with your teachers because they’ll remember you as the good student so if you ever need to hand in assignment late, they’ll be more open to accommodating you.

  1. Don’t study for tests or do big assignments the night before

Another obvious one, but its ignored really often. But seriously do not leave large tasks to the last minute, it doesn’t end well. You’ll be swamped in work, exhausted and stressed like hell, it s just not worth it. You don’t have to do everything in one day, but try to work on or study for upcoming assessments a little at a time, so that when it’s time to wrap everything up and hand it in a good chunk of the work’s already done and you don’t have to put in much effort then.

  1. Set your priorities and don’t be afraid to say no

Figure out the things that are important to you and prioritize what has to be done. Relaxing and going out with friends is important too but if you know you have to study for a test that’s happening the next day but already made plans to go shopping with friends don’t be afraid to skip out on the outing. It’s okay to say no sometimes, it might not make everyone happy but you have to do what’s best for you and if not going to the arcade on the day a big assignment is due is perfectly okay. Make sure the people you hang out with understand your side of things and go on from there.

  1. Have fun!

High school isn’t all school work and planning for the future. While your studies are important, be sure to take time for yourself. Spend time with yourself and enjoy your life. This is a great time for self exploration, and just generally figuring out who you are so take advantage of it. Have fun, enjoy yourself, try out new things and just have an all around good time.

  1. Take Mental Health days

These are super important. Mental health days are basically days where you take a break from everything. Feel free to take time off of school, stay in bed all day, do whatever but try to relax and unwind. These mini vacations are to help you get grounded in a hectic world, so use them to recharge so that you’re ready to tackle the world again. This is designated me time, so use it to keep your sanity while you’re navigating through your next few years.

  1. It’s going to be alright

High school is crazy and stressful, but it’s not impossible. It is alright to be nervous or worried but really it isn’t as bad as it sounds so you will be okay, I promise. All you have to do is try your best, keep up and things will work out. It’s okay to have setbacks but remember that there will always be a solution to the problem, even if it seems hopeless. So do your best and work hard, but remember to take breaks and have fun too. It’ll be okay, seriously.

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