It’s exactly 7 AM and this post has just been published. (Shoutout to scheduled posting. You’re a life saver!) Right now, I’m most likely re-writing my daily to-do list, checking the weather forecast, figuring out a thousand last minute details, and praying that the day will go as smoothly as possible. Why? Well, today’s my graduation celebration. Yes. Graduation. Celebration. I still have a bit of math that I will need to review, but school has been finished, final testing is over, and today, we celebrate with some amazing family and friends!
The school years have been such a long journey and honestly, it’s so hard to believe that it’s actually over! All of the tests that I struggled through, all of the frustrations through high school math, all of the reports and experiments that I hated with a passion, it’s all over! Okay, so I may not have been the best student… But I tried. Now moving on.
Looking back on the high school years there have been so many ups and downs, so many challenges faced, and so many lessons learned. Yes, of course, there have been struggles, but there have also been so many successes! In place of a senior speech, I thought I would write. Wow, what a surprise 😉 It’s just so much easier for me to write my thoughts then it is to speak them out loud. Today, I’m sharing 10 things that I think every teenager needs to keep in mind, especially as they are going through high school. It’s no secret that the teen years can be the hardest years of your life. But you know what else? They can also be the most amazing years of your life. It all depends on the choices you make and the life you choose to create. Keeping these 10 things in mind is extremely helpful when trying to live a wise, successful teen life.
I know that studying doesn’t always seem like the greatest thing on the planet; in fact, sometimes it seems downright awful. But believe it or not, it won’t kill you! If you apply yourself to your studies, things will go a whole lot smoother for you down the road. Pay attention, take notes, ask questions, review, and do whatever it takes to make sure that you really understand what you’re learning. If you don’t understand something, don’t go any further until you have reviewed it and learned it correctly.
Get Up Earlier
I get it. I really do. Mornings just aren’t fun. Especially if you were up late the night before, you would probably give anything to sleep for the next 3 weeks. But don’t do it! Don’t hit the snooze button! Don’t smash your pillow over your face! When you hear your alarm, try to jump up before you even have a chance to think about it. The earlier you are up, the more time you have, and the smoother your day will go. And seriously, have you seen a sunrise lately? They’re pretty beautiful 😉
Take A Breath
Whatever it is that makes you want to start huffing, puffing, and ranting….. Is it REALLY that bad? Well, probably not. Learn when to keep your mouth shut. Learn when to just walk away. Learn when to step back and take a breath. Learn when to keep your thoughts to yourself. The words you speak are either life or death. It’s your choice. When you say something in frustration, you can’t ever take those words back. Yes, you can apologize and you can make things right, but the words have still been said. Save yourself the regrets by learning to just take a breath, pray for patience, and choose your words wisely when you are faced with a frustrating situation.
Live Each Day To The Fullest
Don’t just stumble through your day, wishing something was different or complaining about some small detail. Having that attitude about life will get you nowhere! Even in the boring, mundane tasks of everyday life, give it your best! Don’t just stumble through your entire life, jump right in, give it your all, and live each day to the fullest! Live intentionally, make your choices wisely, have good time management skills, work hard, be dedicated. Wherever you are, be all there!
Appreciate The Family Time
I know that it can seem frustrating sometimes since you are always with your family, but don’t take that time for granted! Someday soon, you’re going to be juggling a busy life schedule and you will realize how much you miss the family time that you used to have. You’ll be leaving for work early in the morning, getting home in the evenings, Believe it or not, someday you’re going to miss it!
Don’t Change Yourself
I’m not saying don’t improve yourself. I’m not saying don’t make changes for the better. No, what I’m saying is, don’t change yourself, to fit into someone else’s mold. If you are feeling pressured to change your personality, appearance, etc. then I would suggest looking for some new friends. You shouldn’t be feeling like you have to change yourself in order to gain someone’s approval. And that’s not the kind of person that you should want approval from! Surround yourself with people who know and love the REAL you. The real you, even with all of your quirks, imperfections, and mistakes.
Stop Worrying about what other people think
Seriously. Just stop. Constantly worrying about what other people think is just going to add unnecessary stress to your life. Please don’t do that to yourself! Stop thinking about how awful your hair looks, how frumpy your clothes look compared to the person sitting next to, how awful your breakout is, how your musical talent is pitiful compared to someone else’s, and on and on this list could go. If you are someone who is always worried about what other people are thinking, I’ve got some good news for you….. It’s really not that bad! YOU are your worst critic.
Don’t Be Afraid To Take Chances
There’s no place for fear in this adventurin’ life! Make big goals. You’re either going to smash them, or you’re not. Either way, you haven’t lost anything! Step out on those limbs, reach for those stars, chase those dreams. It will get you somewhere in life. It really will. Stop thinking about every single little thing that could ever possibly go wrong. You’re either going to succeed, or you’re going to learn a lesson. Taking chances really isn’t a bad thing! Just be sure that you are praying and following good, godly counsel.
You don’t need to be friends with everyone
This actually goes along with one of the previous points, don’t change yourself. Please don’t be changing your personality, based on the people that you are hanging out with! It’s okay to be you! If you are feeling pressured to change the way you act, dress, speak, etc. (in a negative way) and are being challenged to do things that you know you shouldn’t be, you need to find some new friends! Contrary to popular belief, you really don’t need to be best buddies with every single person out there. Friendly? Yes. Friends? No. Find your tribe of a few good, like-minded people, and hold them close.
Time spent serving God will never be wasted
When you are looking back at your teen years, I highly doubt that you are going to regret the ministry opportunities you were apart of, the verses you were memorizing, and the time you spent studying your bible. There are so many different things that can be a total waste of your time, but one thing I’ve learned is that time spent serving God will never be wasted! Help out in a Sunday School class, go on a missions trip, write a letter to the shut-in who can’t make it to church anymore, pray for others. When you are a teenager, you have so many wonderful opportunities to serve, that others may not have. Take advantage of them!
So now I want to hear from YOU! What are some things that you wish you would’ve known through your teen and high school years? What are some things that you are thankful that you DID know? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments down below!