12 November 2014

Secondary School Survival Guide

I'm in my final year of school before I (hopefully) go off to university and I feel like, after 6 years of secondary school, I've finally got to grips with it. I'm not going to go as far as saying that I've mastered the art of surviving school but I'm not too far off. As obscene as it may sound, I don't actually hate school. When I started secondary school back in 2009, I was terrified and for about 3 years, I dreaded going to school everyday. Now, I go to school feeling pretty happy and come home feeling good after a decent day. I can't remember the last time I had an especially bad day at school and although it's stressful, I feel like I'm quite good at managing everything that gets thrown my way. I recently had a conversation on twitter with Holly, Lucy and Fi about school and it became apparent that a lot of teenagers really struggle with school so I thought that, although I'm by no means an expert, I would try to give you all a little bit of advice regarding high school and how to get through it with as little pain as possible. Here we go! ♥

Not everyone will like you and that's totally okay
The first step when it comes to surviving school is working out how to cope with the people there. You're not going to get along with everyone you meet and not everyone there is going to like you, no matter what you do or say. You can be the nicest person in the world but there will always be someone who doesn't like you. The sooner you realise that and work on being happy despite it, the better. It took me a good few years to come to terms with some people not liking me but as soon as I accepted it and moved on, school got a lot easier. Last September, I did a full post about this which you can see here

Some people are annoying
Another thing that I personally use to struggle with was dealing with inconsiderate, disruptive people in classes. I'll be the first to admit that I'm not the most patient and tolerant person in the world so I used to get so frustrated with people in my classes who wouldn't just sit down and work. All I can really say to help with that it is to hold out and just wait for them to either settle down or drop out of school. In my experience, by the time you get to the senior end of high school, you're only with people who want to be there. Just wait it out! 

 Just do you (haters gonna hate)
I recently did a post about image, self confidence and personal style (here!) and that was kinda just the tip of the iceberg because I'm a strong believer in doing and wearing whatever you want and blocking out all the hate. I've been like this for pretty much my full life but even more so since I started my final year of school. Since August, I've been the most confident I've been in years and I really think it's because I'm finally feeling happy with who I am. Being confident in yourself gives you one less thing to worry about so you can focus on school and not constantly worrying about what people think of you makes school a lot more enjoyable. Go for it. Experiment. Make mistakes. Think about the people you admire: I bet they push boundaries and stick to what they believe in. Why not do the same?

Get super organised
Ring-binders, highlighters, flashcards and notebooks are literally your best friends when you're going through school. Those people you call your friends? Scrap 'em. It's all about stationary now. I find that getting lots of pretty stationary makes it all a bit more enjoyable (maybe I'm just a stationary geek). Seriously though, getting organised is the first step towards clearing your mind and dealing with stress. 

Ew exams
Exams are a thing and although they absolutely suck, you might as well stick it out and do your best. I really feel like exams are an awful and unreliable representation of how intelligent a person is and, at the end of the day, it's not all about how textbook-smart you are when you get out into the real world. Despite this, everyone has to do exams and you might as well try your hardest when the time comes to set them. I'm coming up to my third year of exams and over the years, I've tried out both ways of studying: gradual bit-by-bit revising, and last-minute cramming. Both ways actually worked out quite well for me so it's really just about finding the best way for you. Just try to stay calm and don't push yourself too much. Exam-season is stressful for everyone but you'll be okay. Stay positive! I might do another post about studying and exams in the future, if ya want.

Getcha head in the game (gotta getcha getcha getcha getcha head in the game)
It's really important to remember why you're in school. Yeah, it's important to make friends and have s social life - that's a huge part of being a teenager, after all - but you're there to get an education and get the experiences and skills you need to go onto higher education or get a job when you leave school. Stay focused and keep on top of your school work. Do the homework, get stuck in and build up your CV for when school isn't there as a safety blanket anymore. Don't overdo it and push yourself to the point of destruction, just stay on top of it all and focus on getting through school with good grades and as little pain as possible. You can do it!

Give yourself things to look forward to! Make plans with friends and family for the weekend and after school so even if you're having a crappy day, you have something to look forward to later. Give yourself enough time to get your homework done and keep on top of your schoolwork but remember that your weekends are for relaxing. It's so important to unwind and keep yourself healthy and happy - get plenty of sleep, eat healthily and don't neglect your social life. I have a general rule that I don't work after 9pm (this tends to go out the window during exam season, though) and I always make sure I have plenty of time to meet up with friends and relax during the weekend. It's all about finding a balance between school and leisure. It may take a while to get the balance right but once you do, school will be a lot less stressful.
Are you in school? If so, how's it treating you? If not, how did it treat you? Tell me your school stories!
Lots of love, Cat


  1. Lovely post! It is so important to remember these things throughout school :)
    - F - www.elevatorbrain.blogspot.co.uk

  2. I really could have done with this sort of thing when I was 11 and starting high school - but I know that this is the sort of thing that would really help my brother who is at that age and started high school back in September.
    You've reminded me that I really need to get some new stationary to help with revision! xx

    1. I'm happy that you think it could help :) xx

  3. Love these tips, they definitely apply to me, and are going to be really helpful to all the Year 7s that might be struggling - I definitely would have benefitted from something like this!
    Eden x // edenroses // enter my giveaway!

  4. Woah, this is such a fantastic post! You're wise beyond your years! I have to say, as a university student looking back on high school, you've pretty much touched base on all the important points. I love the point on staying true to who you are and just doing you. There are so many kids who become really insecure during those high school years, and it's unfortunate, because we should be supporting each other confidently, rather than putting each other down for differences.

    I'm a new "evil minion" LOL!
    Vivaciously, Vivian


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