I Got The Best Advice In High School When I Least Expected It

I Got The Best Advice In High School When I Least Expected It

The best words we hear aren't always during the moments we expect.
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In high school I was never the class clown, nor was I the "quiet kid". I usually fell somewhere in between. If it was a class I had friends in or had an interesting teacher I was usually interacting and participating in class. If I wasn't good friends with anyone in the class or had a teacher who wasn't as involved in their teaching as others I was usually sitting in the back, daydreaming about being literally anywhere else.

My psychology class junior year was one of those classes where I had a group of close friends and my teacher always gave us interesting and exciting lessons and assignments. It's simple to say that, although I did well in this class, I was not the best student. My friends at the time were very outgoing and, one friend, in particular, loved to talk. This was a class I looked forward to every day and I loved that it was the class that ended my day because I always knew it would leave me in a great mood. This was also the class where I received the best piece of advice I may ever get.

Now, when I was told this advice it was not in a stereotypical, heart-to-heart kind of moment.

We, the class, were working on a project so we were all typing up presentations on the school Chromebooks. I was never very good at independent work. I get distracted easily and would end up online searching up YouTube videos (my personal favorite is "'All Star' by Smashmouth but every word is SomeBODY")

This classroom also had tables rather than desks. While it made a lot more room for books and papers it also gave me a much closer distance between my friends which in the long run made it easier to goof off and harder to stay focused. My table also happened to be perpendicular to my teachers' desk. Many would assume being in such close proximity to the teacher would limit the amount of talking and other off-task shenanigans that would occur but those people would be wrong. A good thing about being this close was that if I had any questions or comments my teacher was 3 feet away and inevitably had no excuse to pretend not to hear me.

Now that you have a general idea of the set-up of the class and my personal classroom experience we can go back to the actual advice.

One day, the class was a little more energetic than usual. We had about 15 minutes before the dismissal bell so naturally, everyone had packed away their belongings and were just chatting among themselves. Someone approached my teacher and asked to use the restroom. She said yes. Me, being the hilarious person I thought I was, decided to ask "Can I go home?" I just assumed she would say no then go back to whatever she was doing. In all regards, it was an annoying question and I don't know why I felt the need to ask. Instead, she just looked at me and said "You know, Randi. You can do anything as long as you are ready to face the consequences."

Maybe that was her hoping I would leave just so I would stop asking dumb questions. Maybe she was feeling a little extra inspirational that day. Who really knows?

I have carried that response with me for nearly two years. It has been a piece of advice I have considered before ignoring homework, driving a little too fast, or just figuring out if I want to get out of bed on time or take those risky five extra minutes. Those few words have stuck with me because I was never the type to really consider the consequences of anything before I did it. I would just do something and hope for the best. It has helped me learn to consider the good and the bad of every situation before I even attempt something. I am thankful for this advice even if it was just said to get me to be quiet.

Cover Image Credit: Redd Angelo

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Dear Soon-To-Be Seniors

These are a few things we'd like to tell you about Senior year.
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Dear soon-to-be high school seniors,

Goodbye. As the class of ahead of you, we've watched you grow, always one step behind us. As we graduate, there are some things I'd like to tell you about your last year of high school.

Yes, Senior year can be just as amazing as everyone says it is, if you make it that way. But don't think it's a blow-off year with no work. This year may hold some of the most stressful times of your life.Be prepared for late nights writing papers or hard tests that could make or break your graduation status. However, don't stress too much about homework. A question I often asked myself this year was, "in twenty years, will I remember staying up till 2am studying for Econ? Or will I remember a fun night with my friends?" Ok, probably not the best advice if you don't have the best of grades, but most of the time you stress yourself out for no reason and miss out on fun things.

Another thing, try to get on the college grind early. If you haven't already, start looking at colleges and applying! Then narrow it down as soon as you can. You don't want to be stressed about that decision in the last month of senior year. Honestly, the sooner you can make your decision, the happier and less stressed you will probably be.

It's not too late to join new things either; a lot of people join a sport or a club senior year and have a lot of fun because of it. So try that thing you've always wanted to join! Speaking of which, go to prom! I won't tell you prom is the best experience of your life because for some people it's not, but it's pretty amazing. Don't stress too much about getting a date, either the right guy/girl will show up, or you'll just go with your friends and still have a blast.

Don't be too rude to the underclassmen. You were that young just a few years ago. And they're the ones who usually put your senior nights together, so make sure you thank them. Also keep in mind that they are looking up to you. Remember those seniors you looked up to just a few short years ago? Be a good example. Take your place in the school as Seniors and continue where we left off; carry on the legacy of your school and be proud of it.

If your school does Kairos (or a similar senior retreat), be absolutely open to it! If it's your thing, enjoy it! If it's not your thing, still try to be open to it. You don't have to love it, but at least don't hate on it before you've even been. Bonding with your class is a big part of senior year. I made so many new friends this year that I never thought I would if it hadn't been for Kairos.

Speaking of which, be open to new friends. Whether they're seniors or not, talk to everyone. In a few months, you may never see those kids again, so it's worth getting to know them past just being friends on Facebook. Also, don't give up on dating people in your class. Yeah, there's only a few months left and you've spent the last 4 years with these people, but there might be one person out there who could change your whole year for the better if you give them the chance.

Above all, enjoy it. You only get one senior year, so make it count. Go to everything you possibly can: every football game, dance, party, musical, bonfire, etc. Enjoy wearing the jersey of your team for the last time, taking your last bow on your high school stage, and turning in your last final, because it will all be gone within the blink of an eye. You'll find yourself walking down the aisle in a cap and gown of those same school colors you thought you despised (but really, you'll secretly miss). You'll look at your favorite teachers lined up behind you and your family sitting in front of you, and most importantly your class around you, and I hope, I really hope, you don't regret a single moment of senior year.

Cover Image Credit: Anna Skog

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Things I Miss Now That I'm Home From College Again

There are so many reasons to be glad that the school year is over, but if you've done it right... there are a lot of reasons to miss it too.

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So, school is over now and I've come home. As expected I was so relieved at first. No more showering with flip-flops, no more listening to screaming girls running up and down the hall, and a space that is mine and mine alone. But after a week or so of being back, there are a few things I've already started to miss.

I know that not every single person has the ideal roommate but I got really lucky with mine. Coming home I was excited to have my own space, but now when I'm doing my midnight scrolling, I'm realizing that I miss being able to talk to her about the funny things I see in that very moment. Tagging, DMing, and texting her doesn't feel the same as a long night of giggles spent together.

Also, while seeing old friends when you get home is amazing, and there is always a lot to catch up on, you do start to miss your other friends too. Being in college means that your friends are going through similar things as you are all the time. You have tests together, clubs together, and sometimes you spend way too much time procrastinating together. The bond you begin to form is one you definitely begin to miss - especially when you guys don't live close off of campus.

Coming home also means you don't have a set schedule or at least not immediately. You may come back to a previous job and that puts something on your calendar, but the free time you still have during the week can be a little too much. I know I've spent way too much time obsessing over the Tati/James drama than I ever would have at school. The routine I had at school kept me busy and entertained, and I'm honestly missing it a lot right now.

There are a lot of other things to miss too - even things you thought you wouldn't. You miss the classes, the teachers, and sometimes the food. I know I miss the environment. It isn't a perfect one, but it's full of people just trying to find their way. We are all working through the roller coaster of life and we are all stuck on one beautiful campus together while we figure it all out. I miss meeting new people at the bus stops or running into old classmates and catching up.

I guess the bonus for me is that I just finished sophomore year which means I have more time to spend at school. Come senior year, I guess I'll have to learn quickly how to deal without the things I miss - and also create a schedule so I can travel to see all of my friends, but those are all problems for future me.

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