I’ve been wanting to write this blog post for quite some time now but felt that I really just didn’t know what I would say to myself, although I knew there were things I wanted to. It took me some time to really gather my thoughts about this so I could say it how I wanted to. My high school years were definitely not so glam, nor were they the highlight of my life, and today I will be writing the things that I wish I knew or that someone would’ve told me during this time when you’re really just growing up and discovering who you really are.
1. Be confident. Always.
I feel that struggling with confidence is definitely a common issue with high schoolers, and it definitely affected me as well. I struggled so much with confidence in high school that I honestly feel that I was just kind of a nobody. I had a small group of friends who were my go-to people to talk to and hang out with, but other than that I didn’t want to socialize with anyone or get to know anybody, didn’t really trust a lot of people, and was really self-conscious about basically everything that I did or what I wore. I felt that everyone was always judging me or making fun of me and that I just didn’t fit in.
Looking back on this, it’s painful to think of that person I used to be. I feel very confident in my life right now as I have grown so much since then, and have really been enjoying my 20s. And because of this, this is something I wish my high school self would have known. You should always be confident in what you do, no matter what. Looking back at my high school years, I feel that I am remembered as the awkward girl or the nobody and I really wish I had just been more myself and not remembered as something that I’m not. While I am a pretty introverted person, I wish it didn’t bother me as much as it had in high school to the point where I was so insecure about myself and my personality.
2. Don’t worry so much about what other people think.
I literally cared way too much about what other people thought of me in high school, and especially in junior high school. When someone made fun of me behind my back I would get so offended and sad and start to believe that those things were actually true. I never showed my true self to my peers because I was afraid of getting made fun of or judged, and I never put myself out there or made the effort to make new friends.
While my high school did have some incredibly mean and rude kids, there were some kids that were actually nice people that wanted to get to know me more and be friends, but I never gave them the chance and felt that they only wanted to get to know me to make fun of me or would find some way to hurt me.
But why spend so much time worrying about what other people think and making yourself unhappy by worrying so much when you can be out there, having fun and making good memories?
3. Don’t pretend to be something that you are not.
A little story time on this subject and why it is so important. The first time I got asked to the homecoming dance was my senior year and it was with a guy who I only kind of knew and talked to a couple of times in classes. Deep down I knew I did not want to go with him because I barely knew him and also just wasn’t interested, but this was the first time I had been asked to the homecoming dance and knew it was my last year of high school and wouldn’t get the chance to again, I felt that I owed it to myself, so I said yes. He had planned for us to go on a fancy boat ride on the lake that a group of the most popular kids in school had planned with basically every single popular person at school. I was excited and nervous but thought it might be cool and help my reputation because every single “cool” person at school would be there. Little did I know that my date only signed us up for the boat ride because he had the same insecurity as I had, although I honestly think for him, it was much worse. We were hanging out with a crowd that just was not me (or him) at all that only wanted to party hard and drink, and tbh, that’s just not my thing and not people I hang around. It was honestly one of the worst nights of my life. I got so mad at my date that I told him off and sat alone outside in the cold on the boat for the rest of the night while every single popular kid on the boat was then getting sick from all the drinking they had done all night. As soon as the boat docked back in the marina, I immediately called my sister as she knew what was going on and she came and picked me up. And I never talked to my date again.
So how does this relate to being something that you’re not? I did so many things wrong in this situation, all things that were not me and were just ways at pretending to be something that I wasn’t, and I honestly wish I had not gone in the first place. But having gone, I learned so much about myself in the process.
I should have said no when he asked if I wanted to go to homecoming, should not have let him make all the plans without him asking me, and should not have spent my night with a large group of people that I did not personally know or got along with just to prove that I was good enough. Never pretend to be something that you are not because you are you and no one else can be you. Own your uniqueness and what makes you different and be proud of it.
4. Everything will get better.
If you’re in high school right now and everything feels like the end of the world, know that it really isn’t and there is so much more to life than your couple years spent in high school. High school is a time where you are learning more and more about who you really are based on the situations you’re put in, the people you are surrounded by, and the events that happen, and is a time for growing up. And it’s not easy for anybody. If you’re having a rough time right now in high school, just know that everything happens for a reason and things will get better.
I learned so much about who I am in high school and I didn’t even realize it at the time. I had a number of toxic friendships that I felt way too bad about ending when I really shouldn’t have been, I was bullied, and I never had a boyfriend or really dated anyone and felt really insecure about that.
And now, I have good friendships with my friends and continue to make new friends as I experience new things and new opportunities, I am very confident with myself and my life right now, and I have a great, loving boyfriend who I have been with for over two and a half years now.
5. Just be you.
I can’t say this enough but it is so important to just be yourself. You’d be surprised at what happens. Everyone is going through the same hardships as you are in high school, no matter how they behave, is experiencing high school and all of its struggles together, and are all just growing up. Try to stick out from the crowd and be your own self, rather than trying to fit in with a bunch of the “same” kinds of people and find others who you can relate to and get along with. Be confident, have fun, and don’t stress over the little things.
If you have made it to the end of my post, thank you so much for reading, I know this was kind of a long one. I know I got a little personal in this post, and I would love to get to know some of you a little bit better too. Looking back at your time in high school, what is one thing you wish you could tell yourself? Let me know in the comments below!
Thanks for reading!