It’s been about a month since I became a sophomore in high school, and I just texted a friend a couple days ago about how I can’t believe that I’m actually half way through my high school journey.
At my school, high school begins in grade 8, so it’s shocking for me to realize that I’m heading towards my final years of secondary education. It’s weird to think that I have more experience than the grade eights and nines but yet the elevens and twelves still know more about navigating through high school life than I do at this point.
A friend once told me that the word sophomore actually means wise fool, and to be honest, I have made some mistakes these past couple years, but I’ve definitely picked up pieces of wisdom along the way. 🙂
So if you’re reading this and you’re a freshman in high school, or whether your halfway, or even graduated, I hope you can relate or take something from my experience.
- People in older grades aren’t as scary as you think. Just because their older doesn’t necessarily mean that their not nice people who will not be willing to help you out with some questions you may have about high school, life, or anything. Don’t be afraid to make new friends in other grades. Talk and get to know them. You’ll be surprised how much you can learn from their experiences.
- Your group of friends is going to change. After graduating from grade 7, I thought I’d remain close with all my friends in elementary. I honestly don’t think I’ve been more wrong in my life. Although I’ve had a couple friends who have stood by my side since then, I’d be lying if I said I still talked to all of them on a regular basis. My circle keeps changing but I know it’s definitely grown in size. Don’t be surprised when people come, go, or change. You learn something from everyone who walks into your life.
- Don’t be afraid to talk to your teachers. At my school, I know I’m blessed to say that I’m comfortable with all my teachers. I don’t mind dropping by their classrooms during after school hours to ask for homework help, for advice, or just to ask how their doing. It turns out that you can learn things outside a textbook from them. Sure, the homework they give can get frustrating, but I’ve learned to appreciate the effort they put into teaching us. Not everyone is as fortunate as you/me to receive an education. Don’t take it for granted. 🙂
- Listen to Rihanna’s advice and work work work work work… All kidding aside, work hard. Put your best effort into completing homework and schoolwork. It feels so satisfying seeing your hard work paid off in grades, report cards, and at award ceremonies.
- Set goals. And reach them. Something that helps me stay motivated throughout the school year is a list of goals I want to achieve during the school year. I like feeling proud and accomplished after each school year ends and I always try to find ways to improve myself for the upcoming school year.
- Choose your friends wisely. All the fights, drama, and emotional breakdowns that are commonly stereotyped to happen in high school can be avoided. It all boils down to how you behave around the people you spend time with. Be with people who bring out the best in you.
- Don’t rush or force yourself into a relationship. Yea, yea. Love, crushes, heartbreaks, and butterflies in the stomach – we’ve all been there… There will be people you develop feelings for during this four/five year period of your life and you might just be convinced that their the one. You are no longer a child in which you believe that girls are the enemy or that boys have cooties. But you’re way too young to truly understand the unending sacrifice and commitment that a marriage or even a relationship requires. At this point, take things slow. It’s not wrong to have feelings or think a certain way about someone, but you should know that actions have consequences, and you definitely do not want certain consequences to have a negative affect on your life later on. Be smart, and decide if whether that person is really worth the risk of heartbreak and rejection later on.
- Get involved. Whether sports, arts, music, or leadership, find something that your school offers that you think you’d enjoy. Life is too short to not do what you love. High school is a good time to find what you’re truly passionate about and discover what you want to pursue later on. Find ways to leave a positive impact on the community around you. Inspire others. Realize that life should be lived with good intentions in order to leave a good legacy.
- Fear God. Proverbs 9:10 states, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.” There have been times I’ve run into these past couple years in which I felt lost or confused, and just wanted to be a kid again. But c’est la vie, and to experience struggles and difficulties is part of being human. It’s a given that youth can be a misleading stage without proper guidance and support. I’ve realized that I need God to be my rock not just throughout my high school years, but all my life. He’s the only One who can provide me proper direction throughout the winding roads I’ve encountered these past two years and guide me through them in perfect peace.
- Know that High School is only the beginning. You may have heard the term commencement used at graduation ceremonies. As grade 12 marks the finish line of your first 12 years of education, there’s still so much in store for your life. The word commencement means start. Maybe you’ll get into a college or university, get a prestigious job, earn lots of money, and raise a family. Maybe you’ll travel the world. Maybe you’ll find a cure for cancer. Possibilities for a future are endless.
So, 2 years down and 2 more to go. I don’t know what God has in store for me after this chapter ends. I just hope that it will be one for the books.