It is getting to that time in my “school journey” that things are becoming serious. Suddenly we’ve got Career’s interviews and talks from veterinary surgeons, we’ve got teachers telling us that we need to dedicate as much time as possible to our school work, but must get a good work-play balance. We also have to exercise regularly and get a good 8+ hours sleep. Oh, and if you ever even want to think about going to University, you’re going to need a big long list of enriching activities that you do outside of school.
I’m so persistently, depressingly stressed about little things that probably don’t matter in the long run: the mark I get in an end of unit test, a piece of maths homework I’m struggling with. I feel like I don’t have any time to do the things I want to do, such as reading all the amazing books out there that I want to read, and yet I don’t feel that I actually do anything in the time that I do have.
And I’m starting to get worried about these “enriching activities”. I keep on reading about young people, my age, who have done… not amazing things, but good, interesting things. They’ve written articles for newspapers, write reviews for authors and go for work experience at the BBC. This is the sort of thing that I know I’d like to do. I’d like to do work experience at a vet surgery, I’d like to write an opinion piece that is published somewhere and read. I’d like to write something meaningful, worthwhile.
I want to be able to look back on these teenage years – the years that are supposedly the best of my life – and think, yes, I made the most of my youth and my lack of responsibilities. I was a well-rounded, functioning, human being. But I don’t know how to start, and thinking about finding out fills me with a deep void of stress because I just don’t know.
And it’s not just me. Around me, I see my friend’s foreheads crease with worry as they desperately scroll through pages, researching our biology isa, I see people doing homework on the bus, realising that what they’re doing is not actually ideal, but unable to change their behaviour because it’s difficult and confusing and there just seems like there’s not enough time to fit in everything there should be in a life.
I want to be an extraordinary person. I want to leave school with more than just a personality-less list of subjects with corresponding grades. I want to leave with good memories, and experience. There are so many oppurtunities out there, but I can never work up the confidence, or the effort to go for them. I’m so scared that I’ll get shot down, so convinced that I want to be able to do it.
So here are my autumn resolutions:
- If I want to do something, I’ll do it.
- I will read
- I will write
- I will not stress about things I have no control over
- I will not do things that are both not beneficial to me in any way, and not enjoyable.
- If I have a problem, feel upset or unhappy, I will write it down, question myself about it, get to the bottom of it. If I can solve it, I will try to. If I cannot, I will try to accept it.
- I will smile more, even when I am not happy inside
- If there is an opportunity I’d love to have, I will try to get it.
And hopefully, oh so hopefully, I might be able to salvage something from these “oh-so-brilliant” years of my life