The Vixen Thinks: Things I Wish I'd Known In High School


The Vixen Thinks is an almost weekly feature on this blog. Posts vary in topic, I'll talk about anything I have an opinion on! From blogging to relationships to feminism and anything beyond. If there's anything you'd like me to write about, feel free to get in touch: theglittervixen(at)gmail(dot)com! Thank you!

Hello, I've got another blast from the past post for you today. It's a good job I'm sure the vast majority of my readers didn't read my old blog eh?! Basically I'm feeling a little uninspired (again) this evening, so, as usual, I trawled my own archives for inspiration. I stumbled across a post about things I wish I'd known in high school, and realised they were all things I needed a reminder of today! 

The Opinions of Others Do Not Reflect Who You Truly Are
People in high school didn't like me. I've always been relatively unashamedly myself and in high school, this meant I had jet black elbow length hair (it was pink underneath for a while too), I definitely wasn't fashionable and favoured black, baggy clothes for such a long period and I didn't have clue about chart music; my classmates would often describe the music I did like as "suicide music." As a result, I spent many years growing up thinking I was a freak, that I was weird, strange, that something was wrong with me. Naturally, this made me feel pretty bad about myself but I knew deep down I shouldn't change myself to please others. What I really wish I'd know is that the opinions of others didn't matter, because that's all they were, opinions. For a start: define normal. What is normal? At the end of the day, I knew that I was a good friend if you gave me the chance, I cared about my friends and allowed them to be who they wanted to be, I appreciated my own music taste. I knew who I was, I still know who I am today, and I realise that what other people think about me is completely irrelevant. Had I realised this in high school, I think I would have been much more open about who I was and I wouldn't have felt like there was something wrong with me.

Life is What You Make It
A big help in my transition from miserable to happy was realising that the only person who has the power to make me miserable is myself; people are only ever miserable because they choose to be. When you realise you have the choice between sadness and happiness, why on earth would you choose sadness? Your thoughts define the world around you and if you actively say to yourself "today, I am choosing to be happy" you soon find that you do indeed feel happy. The day I decided to only see the good in things, the day I started pulling positives out of negatives, the day I realised that my attitude is everything is the day that I got better. It's the day I started telling the world I was in love with my life.

Academic Achievement Isn't Everything
Obviously in school they're going to place a huge focus on getting the grades, but I do wish they'd taught me that there were alternatives to going to university. While university was the best three years of my life and I do not regret choosing to go there at all, it would have been nice for someone besides my dad to sit me down and say "it's ok to do whatever you want, just as long as you're happy." I was led to believe that the only jobs you'd ever get without a degree were supermarket jobs or fast food counter jobs. This is so not true! In fact, I want to be a journalist. Since writing this, I've got myself a job as a journalist and my degree grade never got spoken of during my interviews, they were more interested in this very blog!!! This is a career I don't even need a degree for! While it helps, I'd be in just as good a place, if not a better place, if I'd spent years gaining work experience and practising writing even more than I already do. I think so many kids would be happier going through school if they weren't taught that they are failures if they don't get the grades or go to university.

Talking Badly About Other People Just Reflects Badly on YOU, Not Them!
In a similar vein to opinions of others not being a reflection of you, it's just as true that your opinions of other people don't define them either. In particular though, I've finally realised that being horrible about other people doesn't make them look bad, it makes you look bad. In high school, in an attempt to make myself feel better about the girls that were horrible to me, I'd spend an awful lot of time being horrible about them behind my back. In hindsight, it is no wonder to me now that I didn't feel very good about myself. When you hold such negative views of other people, it's really just a reflection of how you feel about yourself. When you says horrible things, you're wasting time that could be sent saying lovely things. As I've got older, I've found myself having less and less time for people who talk rubbish about other people. I've realised that when my "friends" are talking about their "friends" in a nasty way that I no longer trust this person to not do the same about me; it doesn't really look good for them. I now get really bored whenever anyone tries to start a bitching fest off with me and I'm not interested in talking to them. Chances are, while you're hating on them, they're out living their lives not really caring what others say about them. If you make the effort to only talk about other people in a positive way, people will like you a lot more, and you'll feel a lot better yourself because you're not harbouring all that negativity any more.

What do you wish you'd know during high school?