The Student News Site of Springside Chestnut Hill Academy

The Campus Lantern

The Campus Lantern

The Campus Lantern

Three things I wish someone told me

Amelia Baird
A picture of me standing cliffside looking out at the ocean.

I’ve always been a highly observant and empathetic person — I notice everything around me and immediately I start to make sense of it. Over the past four years I’ve learned a lot about people, friendships, relationships, institutions, and cultures.
As a final word, so to speak, I want to share with you three things I’ve learned in high school because, if you’re anything like me, you might find these lessons helpful.

Stay in your own lane.
It’s really easy to compare yourself to other people in high school. Constantly, there are tons of things happening that pull our attention: other people’s academic achievements, the leadership position they have in a club, the really cool opportunity they have…the list goes on and on.
It was during my sophomore year that I began to understand that comparison is the enemy of good. It was my first year taking honors classes and I always thought that I was not as smart as my classmates. During discussions I’d spend so much time focusing on the fact that my classmates made participation look easy that I grew too nervous to speak. I felt constantly defeated when I heard my classmates talking about their high participation grade knowing that mine was lower.
It was not until the end of sophomore year that I realized my focus should be on what I’m doing rather than my classmates’ actions. I learned that my path is my path, it’s not someone else’s. Understanding this was one of the things that freed me from self-imposed criticism that did no good.

Learn to ask for help.
If you asked me in ninth grade I would’ve said that I could do high school all by myself… I didn’t need help from teachers, friends or any other trusted adults. I thought that no matter what school threw at me I could handle it without anyone by my side. Asking people for help has never been instinctive for me. I’ve always had trouble believing that people around me care enough to go out of their way…but overtime I learned that asking for help does not make you a burden to other people. Learning to ask for help — and seeking support from other people — is one of the bravest and most vulnerable things you can do.

Unhealthy working habits will not make you happy.
I used to think that getting an A was all that mattered. Did it matter if I stayed up till 2am doing homework? Did it matter if I was near tears walking into class the next morning because I was exhausted? For all of ninth and tenth grade the answer would always be no, it didn’t matter because I had a good GPA and from the outside I had it all together.
As I look back on those two years I understand that the grade didn’t make me happy. No good grades solved my sleep deprivation, and no academic validation wiped the tears from my eyes that fell because I thought the world ended in tenth grade Algebra Two.
I forced myself to be near the top of my class academically. And yet, that supposed payoff didn’t make me happy. Good grades were not the solution. I thought that sacrificing myself would benefit me…The truth is, that’s not the reality. Being “perfect” is not worth the hours of work late into the night, it’s not worth the tears spilled over the essay that you think is not good enough.
Yes, it’s important to work hard and do the best you can in high school, but, what’s more important is knowing when to put your laptop down and go relax. In the midst of a stressful academic period go seek out the beauty that life has to offer, go watch the sunset, go take a hike, go laugh with your friends. I promise you it’s worth it.

Truly, I don’t think I would be where I am today without the four years I’ve spent at SCH. I’m incredibly grateful for every opportunity — both good and bad, exciting and heartbreaking – that I’ve had to learn about myself and other people. If you’re reading this now, I encourage you to take some of the things I’ve said to heart; they are things I wish someone would have told me when I was a freshman.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Campus Lantern

Your donation will support the student journalists of Springside Chestnut Hill Academy. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
About the Contributor
Amelia Baird
Amelia Baird, Staff Writer, Editor
Amelia is a senior at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy. She is a passionate reader and writer. Outside of school, she can be found spending time with her mom and cats.
Donate to The Campus Lantern

Comments (0)

All The Campus Lantern Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *