Such a random post today, but who is up for some randomness?!
I graduated high school 13 years ago.
That seriously blows my mind, yet my calendar says it’s true. While in some ways it feels like it was just yesterday, in other ways I can see how much I’ve grown, changed and learned since then (good thing, it was 13 years ago). Since all the graduations ceremonies for the class of 2015 have already taken place, I’m fairly certain that no one is going to be asking me to give a commencement address. I know, I’m as flabbergasted as you are.
I was thinking about high school and college yesterday (love looking through old pictures!) and it made me feel
old mature that I actually was able to come up with a few tiny nuggets of wisdom that I would hand down to an 18 year old me, and though I’m fairly certain most of you are past high school as well, I thought it would be fun to share some what I learned/what I’d do differently/what I did right thoughts with each other!
So if I had asked about any pearls of advice to give to today’s 18-year-olds, here is what they’d be…
1. Don’t stress if you don’t know exactly what you want your college major to be. It’s ok to explore a little. However, think twice about going into major debt to study/party at one school over another. Look into scholarships, work through school, see how you can cut college costs. Graduating college without a lot of student loan debt will be very advantageous to you and start you off on more of a leg up than you realize.
2. If you have to worry about your “best friends” talking trash about you behind your back, then those aren’t really best friends. There are women out there that truly support and encourage each other. Be one of those women and find others that hold the same values to befriend. On the same note, the best friends that have had your back since the beginning? Hold onto them! That kind of friendship is special and it will last through college, marriage, kids and beyond, even if you can’t talk on the phone every day.
3. Start valuing your health over your dress size. I know this can be challenging at first whether you are one of those that can eat fast food every day without gaining or pound or if you feel you must count every calorie. Try to start focusing on eating food that nourishes your body. Learn what makes YOU feel good. Find things you enjoy doing to stay active (as you might notice a change in activity level now that your varsity sports practices are over). There will come a day where what you want most isn’t to fit into X size pants, but to feel energetic and strong to travel/kick butt at work/keep up with your kids.
4. Not everyone is going to like you. Sometimes that will hurt. But if you like you at the end of the day, then that’s what really matters. I promise there are no popularity contests that mean anything when you’re 30.
5. Study abroad. I didn’t and it is one experience I feel I really missed out on. If you have the opportunity and can make it work, take it. Traveling can teach you more than a lot of classrooms ever could.
So now I’m curious, what advice would you give to today’s high school graduates?
Or what advice would you give to an 18-year-old you?
I asked David the same question and he said: Use all the resources and connections offered in college to explore and decide what you want to do. Do internships, network, accept opportunities to meet and mingle with people in different industries in hopes that you will have a sense of what kind of job you want to take (and have a better chance of getting it) upon graduating.
Good one, as I feel like I skipped out on a lot of AWESOME opportunities for events and speakers offer at UGA. Oh to be back in college for just a little bit…