7 Things I Wish I Knew in High School ...

Ahh, my teenage years, full of so much regret, and so many things I wish I knew in high school. There are few ages, if any, that rival these for sheer awkwardness, embarrassment and confusion. Sorry. But a lot of things that seemed to me like THE END OF THE WORLD at school don't matter at all now. So, here are the things I wish I knew I high school; could have saved myself some embarrassment if I had.

1. Mean Girls Will Always Be Mean Girls

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This was one of the things I wish I knew in high school, when I was at the mercy of all those people who teased me, and had the power to totally ruin my day with just one cruel comment. But what I know now - those horrible, mean people who think it’s funny to pick on other people? They're still horrible people, and they probably still do it. But you? You're the one who will change. The only thing that stays the same? You'll always be better than that.

2. But Popular Girls Won't Always Be Popular

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Having said that, it doesn't mean they'll always be as popular as they might be now. Sure, at the moment, they have the boyfriend, the right hair, the attitude. That's all well and good, but that doesn't always translate so well in the real world. Pretty soon, you might be looking back and thinking, is that even the same person?!

3. It Doesn't Matter if You Don't Look the Way They Think You Should

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High school is probably the only time in your life when you'll have so much pressure on you to look and act a certain way. Different cliques have different looks, trends change quickly, having the right hair or bag can be irrationally important. However, now I know that, as you grow older, it's individuality that's valued and praised, not conformity.

4. Learning is the Most Important Thing

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Don't I sound old and terribly boring? At the end of the day, the thing that’s stayed with me, and been of most value to me, from my school years, has been my friends and my education. When all the upset and fun is over, that's the only thing you really have left.

5. Silly Arguments Don't Matter

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If I could have back all the ENDLESS hours I spent worrying about POINTLESS things, I would be a very time rich young woman. Silly arguments with friends, rumours, being afraid to say something in class because it might be the wrong answer - I cannot stress enough how much I wish I knew that those things just do not matter. Go for it, be a good person, ignore the crap and see what happens.

6. Fight Back

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Lots of people get a lot of, for want of a better word, s*** thrown at them at high school. And I took most of it. I put my head down, blushed a little bit and stayed quiet. If someone is treating you unfairly, and picking on you for no reason, stand up to them. Shout in their cruel, unkind faces and make them see that every little barb HURTS.

7. Enjoy It

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You only get to go to school, and college and have all those amazing, horrible, terrifying first experiences once. Once, in your whole life. Unfortunately, we don't get go-overs. I wish I'd spent less time holding back and worrying over what would happen, and just gone for it, and made the most of every minute. Because you may only get one go at your firsts, but you'll remember them forever.

I can't express how much I wish I knew all this stuff at school. It would have made my time there less like a concrete hell on earth, and perhaps even more enjoyable. If something horrible happens, then shake it off - because you will have forgotten about most of those things in a few years. What have your high school experiences been like?

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