Advice From a Northrop Senior

Amanda Newby

Opinions Editor

 

To be fair, I started writing this piece when I had an 8 page paper due in 12 days that I hadn’t started yet, so maybe I’m not the person to listen to. But, if you are going to be a high school senior at some point and you enjoy unconventional (if not unsolicited) advice, then keep reading.

 

 

  • Stick to plain clothes

 

 

You might really want the new Doctor Who shirt or Naruto hoodie, but from experience, it’s better to wear that at conventions. If you wear plain clothes, your personality can speak for itself. If you wear things that broadcast your personality for you, people might not talk to you because they’ve assumed that you don’t have characteristics outside of that. If you are confident in who you are and don’t rely on clothing to tell people who you are, people can see you as the well-rounded individual that you are.

 

 

  • Work with people

 

 

Not just in the sense of doing group projects, but with everything. Turning in your homework is cooperating with your teachers. Asking a new kid to sit with you at lunch is helping them. Passing your classes is working with the guidance counselors. Picking up someone’s pencil for them is helping. If you do little things to make life easier for other people, life will be easier for you.

 

  • Listen to others

 

I mean really listen to people. Not just the words they’re saying, but their body language, and facial expression, and inflection. Really try to understand what people are saying. And not just to you. Listen to what teachers say when they answer someone’s question, or how your parents are putting things away, or your friend’s tone of voice when they tell you about their relationship. Communication is key in any relationship, and a big part of communicating is listening to people.

 

 

  • Work hard, but play hard

 

 

In junior and senior year especially, life can get hectic. If you have a good amount of schoolwork, and extracurriculars, and a job- you can get booked up pretty quickly. Working hard is good, but you have to play hard, too. It’s not sustainable to always have some project or meeting or assignment going on. Making room in your schedule is critical to relieving the stress in your life.

 

 

  • Bring water & snacks

 

 

As a wise company known as Snickers once said, you’re not you when you’re hungry. When you consistently fuel your body throughout the day, you have more energy to get work done. Drinking water throughout the day can reduce stress and prevents headaches, which allows you to focus on getting work done. It may seem like a basic thing to advise, but with only 5 minutes between classes and assignments in class, it can be easy to forget to take care of your needs- which can greatly affect how your day goes.

 

 

  • Be selfish

 

 

Okay, maybe not selfish, but you should value yourself and your needs and wants highly. Your well-being should be your #1 priority. If you’re not in a good place yourself, you can’t help others with their issues effectively.

 

 

  • Get enough sleep

 

 

Easier said than done, I know. But waking up well-rested can really change your whole outlook on life. Something as simple as getting 8 hours of sleep can brighten your mood for the whole day, improving your grades and your social life.

 

 

  • Get a hobby

 

 

If you don’t have some already, that is. Putting effort into school and family life is important, but so is having something that you do by yourself for yourself. Northrop especially helps with this, with theater and creative writing and debate classes. There’s something for everyone.

 

 

  • Be happy

 

 

Above all, try your best to be happy. Schedule classes that you think you would enjoy. Use the vast expanse of the internet to learn about things that interest you, not just things you are required to learn for classes. Talk to your teachers like real people, and that’s how they’ll talk to you. Become friends and hang out with people who care about you, and who you have a good time with. Invest time in a hobby that adds to your life. Above all, foster a healthy relationship with yourself. It will improve all other aspects of your life.
In the end, the way I’ve learned to live my life is simple but helpful. Do what makes you happy as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone (including yourself.) If you try to live by that, and you should be good.

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