6 Things I Wish I Would Have Known as High School Senior
Updated: Apr 3
Girl, this is such a special time. There is so much going on and it can definitely be overwhelming at times. Take it from someone who's been there - it's all going to work out.
Here are some tips that I wish I would have known a few years back...
1) Take it In
It was after I was out of college that I realized my life had been going a million miles a minute and I had never truly taken a minute to slow down and take in what was happening.
During the midst of crazy midterms and extra curricular activities, it's easy to feel like you're on autopilot every day. But girl, please take a minute to soak in this time. What helps me do that is write down 10 things every day I'm grateful for. You can also keep a daily journal to record what's been happening - trust me, you'll treasure that later.
2) You Don't Have to Know What You Want to Be When You Grow Up
If you're like me, I was terrified I had to have a complete life plan by the time I graduated. It's a lot of pressure to know what the rest of your life is going to look like at 18. And I'll let you in on a secret...it almost never goes as you planned.
For me, I majored in writing for television, convinced I would live in LA and write shows in Hollywood. Well, I tried it out and realized it wasn't for me. Just because you choose a major, it doesn't mean you're stuck with it for life. Take some pressure off that decision and go into this next chapter with an open mind, knowing it's okay to pivot.
3) Realize What You Actually Like to Do and What You Don't
What activities are you only a part of because your parents made you or your friends were doing so you decided to tag along. Do you even like them? Do they bring you joy?
Some seniors play a sport for years before they realize they actually hate it. I realized I hated playing an instrument and was only in band because my friends were there and my parents encouraged it.
Now is the time to truly think about what brings you happiness and if you want to continue with it after high school (because you totally don't!)
3) There are No Wrong Decisions
Right now it might seem that college is the biggest decision you'll ever have to make. In some ways that's true for right now, but the pressure to pick the 'right' college can be daunting.
My biggest advice is that no matter where you go, there will be good things and bad things about it. It's truly your mindset going in that will determine whether or not it's a good fit. And if it turns out that it wasn't what you were expecting, there is no shame in transferring.
4) College Does Not Define You
Again, it might seem as though the weight of the world is on your shoulders right now to choose the right path. If you don't get into your dream school, it can be devastating. I wish I could go back and tell myself that not getting into that school was for a reason. Trust that the opportunities presented to you are where you're meant to be.
And just because it isn't an Ivy League or you need to go to community college first, doesn't take away from the fact that you're getting an education some people only dream of. So be proud of the fact you worked so hard to make it this far.
5) Stop Worrying So Much
Girl, this one I definitely wish I could go back and tell myself.
In high school I worried about everything. I felt so much pressure to get good grades, be on top of all my extra curriculars, and also have a social life. It resulted in 18 hour days and burnout.
I can guarantee you that you will not remember the grade you got on that history test, but rather the time you stayed up all night with your girlfriends, or flirting with your crush at a party, or those crazy memories (you know what I'm talking about.)
Yes good grades are important, but it's all about balance. I can't stress this enough. You're only a senior once and this is the time in your life without the huge responsibilities that will come later, so enjoy it now.
6) It's All Going to Work Out
This is the most important out of everything.
So you failed a test. You lost a game or a competition. You didn't get into your dream school.
Repeat after me: It's all going to work out.
There are times I remember feeling as though it was the end of the world. And guess what? I am completely fine and it all worked out.
Everything happens for a reason and you just have to trust that it will all be okay, because it will.
Instead of trying to control everything, try letting go and being open to where life can take you. In just a few months you'll have a whole new life and the opportunities are endless. Take advantage of this and let go of your need for certainty.
So for now, enjoy the moment. Take in this year and your friends and create those crazy memories. Try to take the pressure off yourself and just have fun, knowing everything will work out, promise.
Need college advice? Don't hesitate to email or DM me - I'm totally here for you!
Interested in becoming a Gina Co. Senior? Click here.