high school just got simpler

Sunday, August 28, 2011

New Year. New You.

Summer is ending, and high school is starting. You've heard the phrase "it's a new year" before, but what does it really mean?

  • You are in the next grade.
  • You have new classes.
  • You are one year older.
  • You are more mature (I hope).
  • You have more responsibility.
  • You have more freedom.
  • You have become more you.
This is a lot to think about. It may mean nothing to the general public, but when you do actually think about it, it hits you.

You can be whatever/whoever you want. (Within good reason).

This new year lets you get a fresh start.

Bad grades last year? This year you know what you need to do to get good grades. Do your homework, or whatever needs changed.

Getting sucked into the wrong crowd? Don't let peer pressure control you. Do what is best. Even if it isn't necessarily the "cool" thing to do.

Find your own niche in life. Was last year's style of chains, dyed black hair, and black clothing just not for you? Don't repeat something you didn't like!

Take this new year to think about the complex life you've formed by society's pressure and today's culture. Do you really need those $100 jeans for school, does last year's pair still fit you? Make this year at school your most simple year ever. You'll be more likely to have less stress, get better grades, and be an overall happier person.

My senior year was by far the best year of high school. But before my senior year, I struggled too. Freshman through junior year I had problems with homework, testing, studying, everything. I needed more help than I was willing to admit back then. But I am glad to say that I succeeded, and did what I could to achieve my goals. I wasn't a 4.0 student, but I was able to juggle decent grades and extra curricular activities. I didn't prioritize correctly, and took on way too much. I let my commitments take over my life. I was constantly stressed and distracted.

I wanted to know how to fix this. How to juggle commitments, school and life simply. 

I looked to the internet and found blogs covering just that. I gave it some thought. I read, and jumped into it. I started with the mental things: noticing what commitments I had, making my life easier, etc. I fell in love with the results and continued. I noticed how much I had changed over the summer of 2010 and thought about how much this would impact my schooling. It would either help it extremely, or hurt it.

It definitely wasn't the latter.

My grades during the 2010-2011 school year were the best I've ever had. I had a 4.1 during the first quarter. That is a huge difference than the 3.2 during the end of my junior year. I kept my grades up by simply paying attention, eliminating distractions, and focusing. I turned all my homework in, all of my tests were fantastic, and I was happier with my life outside of school as well.

This is all possible just from living simply and minimally; but if these kinds of results exist, why doesn't every high school student do this?

Society tells you no. Our culture wants you to have more. Do more. Be more. They want you do be the star athlete, take AP classes, be the student body president, and manage your social life. This is all wrong. Do what you want. Find the things you like and stick to them. Don't load your life with commitments and things that won't help you become what you want to be.

This year, do one thing. Live simply.