High school was pretty daunting, but I think I’ve mastered it pretty well. I’m writing five tips below that I would recommend to all high school kids. More specifically, the scared incoming freshman who doesn’t know what to do when they enter high school. Just a little warning, this is written through my perspective, so some things may not apply to you. If they don’t, oh well, you’re always free to leave. Here’s a video of kittens.
1.) Join a club that you think is cool
This will dramatically increase your social life. It doesn’t matter how shy you think you are. For one, this works because you’re putting yourself out there, and two, you have an instant commonality with someone there. On top of that, you get to learn about cool stuff. Things like, Engineering, Spanish, and health are all available.
Clubs and organizations are such a great way to meet people. There’s something about it that gives you a solid friend throughout high school.
2.) Holy crap, don’t stop reading books
My love of reading books slowed down during my Sophomore year. It was awful. My reading score dropped to a level 4 on the state test. Also, I wasn’t getting any fulfillment outside of my classes. The time reading was substituted for hours spent playing video games.
I realized my mistake and during my Junior year, I managed to score 97 percentile on the reading section. So, that’s why this is on the list. If I kept reading, my test scores would have been higher than they were, but more importantly, I would have learned a lot more about the world.
There are a lot of different genres of books to read. Young adult novels, beautiful poetry, life-changing biographies, and informational tutorials. I highly recommend heading to a book store and finding a couple of books that catch your eye, then start reading them. It’s a great adventure.
3.) Explore new things
I can’t stand repetition and boring cycles. I don’t like only talking to my friends from elementary school. I like meeting new people, and experiencing new things. So, this tip is suited towards my personality. I wish my past self started checking out different activities.
My confidence wasn’t as high back then, but now so many things seem possible. Publishing a book, learning a martial art, speaking multiple languages, or learning how to program all seem possible. I made a lot of excuses for not even attempting these activities which sucks.
Learning new things is great because for many reasons. It gives you fun things to try out when you’re bored. It teaches you mindsets that you can apply to other areas of your life. In general, it’s really easy.
The first thing I learned to do was shuffle cards, then bridge. Then, I moved into magic tricks months later. Now, I have so many activities that I’ve tried out, and it’s absolutely amazing. There hasn’t been a many moments of me dying of boredom this Summer.
Again, this type of lifestyle probably isn’t for everyone, but I have enjoyed my experiences dancing, picking locks, and speaking Spanish.
4.) You’re future self would appreciate you doing some practice SAT’s
NOT taking the extra freaking AP classes. This is way more useful than having 7 AP classes passed instead of five. Colleges care about whether you can get a high score on this test way more than your AP scores. Even if you have a death wish to pursue these advanced classes, add some time to study for the SATs.
When you’re realizing that the average students at X university are demolishing you’ll kick yourself for not practicing. Also, the key word is practicing. Reading a book that contains “strategies” for “acing” the exam don’t help much. Reading more books and solving more math problems are some of the best ways to improve your score. You don’t have to pay for a tutor, you just have to buy a big practice book and start solving problems.
5.) Trust yourself, make the choices that you want
There are a lot of insecure people in high school. There are people who just follow the crowd. They do X because people tell them to the X. They’re going to college because it’s what their parents recommended.
There are so many problems with this kind of thinking. It doesn’t lead to anything good. At best, you’ll land a job or live a life that doesn’t bore you to death. You should be making decisions for yourself. Even if you don’t know what the heck you’re doing. I don’t know what the heck I’m doing. The key is trusting yourself.
It doesn’t just mean choosing your own decisions. It means executing the plans that you’ve decided you want to do. These like starting a business, writing a blog, or asking a cute girl out at school. It sucks at first, but you get better and you learn. Eventually, you learn to control the anxiety. You get better at facing the uncertainty, and, as a result, you grow as a person.