In high school, I always wanted to be part of the “in” crowd. This is probably the story of almost every teenager’s life. It sounds so incredibly stupid five years after I’ve left high school, I can only imagine how much pettier it will seem as time goes by. So many things have happened that have shaped me and helped me become who I am today. The truth is, I was a different person in high school, I felt like an outsider. I wanted to fit in so bad but I couldn’t help but find that the jokes my peers told weren’t that funny, and that worrying about who was “prettier” was stupid.
Looking back, I stressed too much about not fitting in, I thought something was wrong with me. I felt unimportant and I didn’t feel pretty enough or funny enough for the people around me. There’s so much I wish I could go back and tell myself while I was growing up. But even though I can’t, I’m glad I know these things now.
1. Those girls you “want to be” have their insecurities and problems too.
They’re not perfect, they have also suffered heartbreak, someone has also gossiped about them at some point.
2. About those girls: they may “rule” high school, but just wait a couple of years.
When you’re far, far away making your dreams come true,they won’t even matter anymore.
You get to rule your life and make it what you want to be. (Also, some of them will be doing things that will seem really uninteresting and funny to you; don’t worry too much.
3. Everyone has boys that don’t pay any attention to them at all.
You’re both 15 or 16 or 18. So much has to happen for you to be able to have a healthy and mature relationship. The right guy will come, I promise, and most importantly: he’ll come at the right time. If it’s while you’re both in high school, great. If it’s not, don’t sweat it too much. There are so many people you have yet to meet.
4. Love yourself.
Confidence is so important when it comes to influencing how others perceive you. Studies have shown it is key in becoming successful. Faces clear up, bodies change, slowly you’ll grow into yourself. Your boobs may not get bigger but who cares? You don’t have to look like her, or her, or her. You are beautiful in your own way, and if you love yourself and walk like you believe you’re beautiful, others will see that beauty too.
5. Don’t be afraid to be different.
Don’t fall into the herd mentality. If you think something is stupid, don’t ascribe to it. If you don’t find something funny, don’t fake laugh. Again, your individuality and uniqueness is so important. You may only see these people for a couple more years, but you will see yourself for the rest of your life. Be you.
6. Don’t sell yourself short.
The people who think impossible things and go for them are the ones that obtain them. I never thought I would be where I am in life right now, but I am happy I decided to apply for that internship, apply for that school, move to that city (as outrageous and far-fetched as those decisions seemed at the time). It takes courage, but it will pay off.
7. Don’t take what they say or think about you too seriously.
You have a whole lifetime ahead of you. In the grand scheme of things, them making fun of you will be a speck of dust in the galaxy of your life (got a little carried away there).
8. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes.
This is the time when it’s easier for you to get up if you fall, to overcome stupid mistakes.
9. Go for it.
Talk to that girl you want to be friends with, who knows, maybe you do have more in common than you think you do. Talk to that boy you like, put yourself on the radar. Maybe you’ll discover he’s terrible at conversation and is not at all who you thought he was. Maybe you’ll end up dating him for a while. Maybe he’ll reject you. But at least you tried.
10. Don’t stop believing.
Hold on to that feeling, and hold on to the good things, even if they are small. They’ll get you through this time and many other hardships. You can be whatever you want to be. Keep your head up and trust that everything happens for a reason. Sometimes things don’t work out the way we want them to, they are even better than we ever dreamt.