It’s not what you plan

Its not what you plan

High school is one of the most sensationalized eras  of your life. By the time you enter the building at age 14, you have about a million ideas of what these four years are going to be like. Unfortunately, life isn’t a teenage rom-com where your perfect social life takes priority over your grades. In reality, the “high school experience” is going to vary wildly from person to person. The way you go about making friends, developing your sense of self, and involving yourself in your education will not only change drastically over the course of high school, but will lead you down paths you never expected to go down.

Like most people, when I started high school I was weird and awkward. I had no sense of self and I struggled with severe anxiety about the way people perceived me. I was under the impression that these four years would be some of the most important of my life, but the reality is, that just isn’t true. During high school, you’re still a child. You’re learning how to be an adult. That can only happen if you make mistakes and grow from them. Comparing me now, in my senior year, to me in my freshman year is similar to comparing two separate people. I’ve grown, matured, gained confidence, lost and made new friends, and have become strong-willed and outspoken.

There’s a lot of uncertainty when it comes to entering adulthood. You have to navigate a brand new part of your life while also dealing with the housing market, inflation, gas prices, and so much more. It’s easy to let it get to you and become overwhelmed at the thought of what comes after high school. It’s important to remember that most things in our society are designed to suck up all your money and labor all the while you’re told to deal with it – that is something completely out of our control. That’s not to say that it’s impossible to be successful, but I’m also not going to lie to you, your options are much more limited than they once were.

You may look around at all the people who seem like they have the next 20 years of their life mapped out and start to sweat a little bit. The reality is, life doesn’t care about the plans we make. It’s crazy and unexpected. Life will take all those plans you made, chew them up, and spit them right back at you. You can choose to look at that as scary, but I choose to look at it as comforting. When it comes down to it, we’re a bunch of teenagers being asked to determine our future right here and now. I don’t know about you, but I have no clue where I’m going to be in 20  years. Knowing that what I decide isn’t set in stone is a huge weight off of my shoulders. So use high school for what it’s meant to be used for. Use it as a stepping stone to the next part of your life.

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