Hey guys! I hope you’re doing well. I did a poll on Twitter ages ago about what sort of posts you guys would like to see from me in the future and someone commented saying that they would like to get to know the person behind the blog a little bit more and I want to do those sorts of posts, too, so I thought that I would start with something that I’ve been aiming to address myself for the past few years so I thought that it would be quite cathartic to write it out and share it with you guys. Don’t worry – it’s not overly personal! It could probably be applied to a lot of your teenage lives/what you’re going through right now if you’re that age.
- School does end.
I remember feeling like school was literally never going to end. To be fair, we spend so much of our lives at school that it is understandable to feel that way. I feel like I had a particularly bad time of it at school but I’ll get into that a bit later. It feels like your life is never going to properly begin – cue Tangled soundtrack – because you’re just trapped in an endless stream of lessons. Some you like, some you don’t. Surrounded by classmates who again, some you like, some you don’t. But I would say to my teenage self to not wish her life away and to remember that it does soon come around that you’re free from school – so you may as well enjoy learning while you can. I’m now out of school, out of uni and I would say that I really miss learning new things which is why I listen to podcasts 24/7.
2. It’s okay to stand up for yourself.
I think that this is a post that could be entirely its own thing but a big problem in my school life was that I was bullied constantly throughout both primary and secondary school for so many different reasons and sometimes, for no reason at all. But because I was such a scared little weed – which was okay for me at the time – I never stood up for myself and I never said that what people were saying to me wasn’t okay. But in a way, I feel like that was something that I needed to go through because I came out of it a lot stronger. Sure, I still sometimes don’t know how to handle what people say to me – again, this is a post that will come later – but I know when to pick my battlles now and I’m not afraid to say when someone is being unfair. A part of me would really like to meet some of my bullies again and see them try to act the way they used to to me now.
3. It’s okay to say no.
This is a mantra for life. You don’t have to say yes to anything that you don’t feel comfortable with and if someone doesn’t understand that then they aren’t worth your time of day or having you in their lives at all. I don’t want anyone to be reading this thinking that something really traumatic happened to me because it didn’t – but there were times in my teenage life when I really wish I had just said no. I would often go around the houses to try and find a way to get out of something without it looking like I was directly saying ‘no’. Again, if I could go back in time, I would say no to a lot of things and I’m sure that some elements of my life would be different and perhaps some completely the same. But now, I’m a lot more willing to say no rather than to make excuses.
4. Relationships aren’t as big a deal as people make out.
Peer pressure is such a prevalent thing in schools. This is probably another post I could make but I remember my ‘first boyfriend’ being literally because I wanted to be ‘in a relationship’ with someone. My friend said that she wanted to set me up with someone and now that I look back on it, I could have landed myself in a very dangerous situation. I had no idea why my mum and dad were so angry – well, I did. But looking back on it with an adult perspective, I can see exactly what dangers I could have put myself in. All because I wanted to be someone with a boyfriend. Well, 23 year old me can tell 15 year old me that having a boyfriend – a proper one – isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Sure, sometimes it’s great. But they bring their own problems and you have to make sure that you’re with the right person. I’m quite happily single and not willing to waste my time on anyone else. The thing is, too, is that if you’re defined by your relationship – then that’s so empty. Self-discovery is the best part of being single.
5. Mental health is hard but you’re not alone.
I think the one thing I wouldn’t tell my 15 year old self if I met her is that I still do struggle with my mental health. I always used to think it was like measles and was cured after a moment but now I realise that my mental health and me are probably in it for the long haul. But what has changed is that I’ve found ways to cope, I’ve actually allowed myself to struggle with it on days that I’ve struggled – and the biggest is that I’ve opened up. I’ve found people that I trust to talk to about it – the most important being my mum – and I’m quite open about talking about it. It isn’t something to be ashamed of and it’s really eye-opening to see who stays with you when they find out and who runs away. If people do run away, it’s probably because they don’t understand. And that’s okay. Not everyone does. But even though there are days when I really battle with my mental health, more often than not, I know how to live with it. It sucks, it really does; but I know now that I’m not alone. I remember people used to make fun at me at school for how I used to sit in the lunchtimes looking empty or sad. They used to do the grumpy cat face and say it was me and laugh. And I look back on it now and think… they just didn’t get what I was going through. And truth was, I didn’t either. But I do now and it’s nothing to be ashamed of.
So there you have it! A bit more of a personal post and I really hope this helped some of you guys. I’d be really interested to read your own versions of this if you have it or if you’re going to write it in the future – please link me in the comments!
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