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Figuring It All Out

Being a young person in this generation can get complicated. Sometimes it feels as if every aspect of your life has crumbled together into a giant mess, and you aren’t quite sure how to get it cleaned up. For example, there’s the classic issue of your parents not understanding you. Or people you would’ve considered “great friends” turning out to be the exact opposite. Then of course you can’t forget about that cute boy you’ve had your eye on, who despite all of your valiant efforts, is just as confusing as ever. With that said, I’ve made a list of a few lessons I’ve recently learned that might help:

1. High-School doesn’t last forever, it may seem like it now, but trust me when I say it goes by quick. You will probably meet some of the best people you’ve known in your life so far, but also some of the worst, so be prepared. And most importantly just try and enjoy it. You’re required to be there anyways, so might as well make it memorable.

2. Everybody goes through phases. Sometimes you’ll want to wear only black clothing for an entire year. Or become a vegetarian. Maybe you’ll try your hand at art. Whatever it is, never be afraid to embrace it.

3. Never be embarrassed about who you are, or what you like. So what if the new Taylor Swift album is all you’ve been listening to for the last month. Maybe you prefer staying in on a Friday night watching OITNB instead of going out. You’ll come to realize that the only opinion that truly matters is your own.

4. You can’t control everything. Life happens, and sometimes things can get messy. It could take days to work everything out. Or even years. The only way to get through it is to get through it.

5. Explore new things. Try a new pizza topping. Listen to bands you’ve never heard of. Test out a bold lipstick color. Never be afraid of trying new things. You’ll be surprised at the results.

6. Hang out with your family. Yes, parents can be aggravating, and siblings can get annoying. But one day you’ll be older, and living on your own, and you’re going to miss them a lot. The time you have with them is limited. Don’t waste it.

7. Boys are confusing. One day they can light a spark in you, and you’ll feel like the luckiest girl in the world. Other days you’ll drive home crying because he’ll text claiming that “none of it was ever real for him.” It’ll take time, but you won’t feel that hurt forever. I promise.

8. Find real friends. Look for people who share the same interests as you. Or maybe somebody who’s your exact opposite. That quiet girl in your chemistry class could end up being one of your best friends. You’ll never know unless you talk to people, and not everybody you meet is going to want to be your friend. Don’t take it personally.

9. Set goals for yourself. It could be something as simple as getting your own laundry done, or remembering to call your grandma. Any small achievement is going to increasingly make you feel better, and make feel more motivated.

10. Everybody messes up sometimes. As people, it’s in our chemical makeup to screw up every now and then. It’s not going to destroy your life. If anything, take the situation with a grain of salt and just work to move past it. In two weeks time, it probably won’t even be on your mind.

Words by Elizabeth Pierce // Photography by Gina J Lee.

© 2015 Reef Magazine


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