5 Tips for a Successful School Year
It’s that time of year again. Students all around have stocked up on notebooks and highlighters and headed back to school. Whether you’re back at the same high school or off to college, here are five tips for having a successful school year.
1.Develop a positive self-image.
It doesn’t matter what your past choices have been – the things you’ve done or not done, the mistakes you’ve made or the opportunities you’ve missed. Today, right now, you have positive qualities to celebrate. Are you good in math? a good listener? helpful? kind to animals? a great story-teller? great with a power tool? a good singer or artist? an excellent organizer?
Everyone has talents or interests or natural gifts that set them apart from the crowd. Find yours and rock it! It’s ok to feel good about the things you’re good at.
2. See the positive.
Even on the worst day, there’s something to be grateful for. But our tendency is to downplay all the good things that happen in the day and focus on the one thing that went wrong. Flip that habit. Instead, take a moment during the day to think of three things you can be thankful for – three things that went right. Research shows that positive thoughts help you see more possibilities in your life and increase your skills and resources.
3. Talk to your parents.
We know, we know – this doesn’t seem like very cool advice. But having a healthy relationship with your parents will help you have healthier relationships with other people and will help you do better in school. So even if the conversations seem a bit forced or awkward, talk to them. Tell them about your day – about that tough test in algebra or the kid who gets all up in your business at the lunch table, about the way your roommate snores or about the professor who spends the entire class talking about his dog. And when you have a decision to make, ask your parents for advice. You may be surprised that they faced a similar choice when they were your age. Finally, do stuff with your parents – clean the kitchen together, binge-watch a Netflix show together or play a game together. Sometimes doing things together can take the pressure off thinking of what to say.
4. Set healthy boundaries.
Pay attention to your gut, especially to when you’re uncomfortable in situations. This might be the friend you think is using you for answers to the math homework or the roommate who brings their significant other into your room for a sleepover or your own boyfriend or girlfriend who’s pressuring you for sex or telling you who you can be friends with. When you feel uncomfortable, speak up and assert yourself. Decide what your personal boundaries are and let others know where your comfort level line is.
5. Live your values.
Living your values means deciding what is important to you and living your life accordingly. It means speaking up to say, “I stand for this” or “This is what I’m all about,” and then following it up with your actions. You don’t have to wait until you’re settled into your adult life to live your values. Let your values impact the things you choose to do or not do right now.
Here at Collage, we’re cheering you on as you start a brand-new school year. We hope it’s filled with successes and healthy relationships. We also know that sometimes, life isn’t as easy as 5 tips for success. In those moments, we’re here for you. If you find yourself struggling with life choices or bumpy relationships, a member of our team is available to sit down and listen and help you work through it. Just give us a call at either our Kearney or Grand Island office or shoot us an email.