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50 Things I wish I'd learned in high school

Newlywed, new mom and first-time home buyer, Sarah is currently playing out her exciting life in Phoenix, Arizona. She recently gave up her job in finance to stay at home with her baby girl, who between bath time and feeding time, keeps ...

Life lessons from high school

What do you wish you learned in high school? Here, readers reveal valuable lessons they wish they had learned beyond academics.

Recent high school grads

Last month was my 10-year high school reunion. Though I wasn’t able to attend, I did spend some time reflecting on all that happened and all the memories that were made during that crucial time. While I would say I had a good experience overall, looking back I would have been less involved in drama and popularity contests and more involved in the clubs and activities the school had to offer. The “cool” kids are no longer cool — in fact, I don’t even remember their names. If I knew then what I know now, high school would have been more about me and my interests rather than trying to fit in. Here, others share what they wish they had known in high school.

1

A few months after high school, no one but you will remember 99 percent of the things you were focused on, so be the best person you can be. — Eli

2

I wish I learned that the main problem with keeping a job would be the people I work for, not the work itself or the education to get there. — John

3

The kids that thought they were “all that” never really do anything with themselves. — Michelle

4

To not stress about boys and dating and that I would meet “the one” shortly after college. — Sarah

5

Everyone is insecure. That’s OK. — Michelle

6

Don’t take it so seriously! — Michelle

7

Everybody has secrets. What others appear to have may be nothing close to what they are experiencing. — Holly

8

It would have been life-changing for me to know that what I thought about myself was more important than what others thought of me. — Melissa

9

I wish I learned more about owning and operating your own business. — Teana

10

By your 25th reunion, no one remembers if you fit in or not in high school. — Deb

11

Your SAT scores don’t define you. — Hilary

12

These are not the best years of your life. — Deb

13

Love yourself more than you love your dating partner. — Anisah

14

Being an overachiever isn’t a prerequisite for living life! — Casey

15

Enjoy learning and make friends on a
deeper level. — Raj

16

Find something you love and become
great at it. — Rachelle

17

Who you know is more important than what you know. Kindness is key! — Rachelle

18

I wish I learned more career options other than the traditional American dream. — Rick

19

College would have been a smarter choice than marriage and twins. — LinDee

20

I wish I recognized the importance of joining social and academic clubs. — Theresa

21

Boys will like you more if you make
them wait. — Diana

22

Every boyfriend is not your potential
husband. — Trisha

23

The friends you have right now in high school most likely won’t be the friends you have
for life. — Trisha

24

Despite what everyone says, high school is most likely one of the low points of your life. — Shane

25

The hot cheerleader is going to get fat. — Shane

26

It’s OK to make your own way. Passion is key. — Ina

27

The person I fall in love with first isn’t who I’ll love last. — Tamar

28

Living life to please others will only leave you disappointed. — Tammy

29

Do what you need to do to pass, and
move on. — Shane

30

I wish I had known the importance of everyday physical health. — Theresa

31

I wish I had known that I was dyslexic. — Holly

32

That being smart is a good thing. — Luis

33

The second you graduate, nothing that happened in high school matters one iota. — Terri

34

High school does not prepare you for the real world in any way, shape or form. — Terri

35

I wish I had known more about finding
scholarships. — Alex

36

Real life isn’t all about boys, dancing
and makeup. — LinDee

37

I should have saved for a rainy day. — Tammy

38

Do one thing you love every day. — Anisah

39

That it’s not worth wasting time on cute girls that are mean. — Luis

40

Unconventional paths are sometimes the most fulfilling. — Dolce

41

Don’t feel pressure to go to prom. — Lisa

42

The key to life is to fail and try again. — Brian

43

Being teased isn’t a representation of who I am forever. — Tamar

44

That college funding was available through many sources. — Diane

45

It’s OK to change your mind and change your path at any time. — Kirsty

46

Whether you like it or not, your parents really do know what is best for you. — Crystal

47

I wish I had learned more on how to manage
money. — Jane

48

I wish I knew that AP classes only count if you pass the AP exam. — Alex

49

To always stick with my morals. —  Randy

50

The kids around me don’t define me. — Kathy

tell us:

Readers: What do you wish you learned in high school? Share in the comments below!

More on high school

Life after high school
Preventing school dropouts: How you can make a difference
5 Creative gifts for the high school graduate

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