Advice From A Senior: Be Present

Photo courtesy of

Photo courtesy of

Be Present

A poet and philosopher named Henry David Thoreau once said, “You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment. Fools stand on their island of opportunities and look toward another land. There is no other land; there is no other life but this.”

As it turns out the old, cliché saying all high schoolers reveal when they reflect back on their experience is true: high school does go by fast. While sitting in Geometry or History class watching the clock tick by, it might not seem like time is moving. But once you enter your final year of high school, classes and homework will not fill your mind but the experiences, memories, and lessons learned throughout high school will. 

Before you know it, your final year of high school will be here. You will be scrambling to finish college applications, bustling to attend each sporting event or trying to be active in a club you participate in. In the past, this final year seemed so far away, but now, it is already the third marking period. It is already time to start making college decisions and finalize actions for the future ahead. So here is some advice from a senior who is reflecting back on her high school years.

Be present. Like Henry David Thoreau stressed, opportunities and moments do not present themselves if you wait around. An anonymous quote inspired this article and it is one that I hope inspires underclassmen, too. The quote reads, “Stop waiting for Friday, for summer, for someone to fall in love with you, for life. Happiness is achieved when you stop waiting for it and make the most of the moment you are in now.” 

This quote is something that many students need to read as they move on from each year of high school. Students must live in each moment and take in the memories they are making. It is important to take time to be surrounded by the people you love who will create opportunity, success, and happiness. Being present does not mean standing in a room full of people. It means being the person who is taking action, creating conversation, being themself. 

As a senior, I too have missed opportunities for fun or new friendships. All because I was so caught up in ensuring my future was set with success, college, and good grades. Because of this focus, I missed out on experiences like sporting events, plays, dances, and extracurriculars. From this, I learned to live in the present. To take every moment as it is. I enter each day with hope and excitement taking on any challenges I face. I believe that each student should have this attitude. Focusing on grades and college is important; however, life is full of different opportunities that will lead to success. Memories come from unique experiences so allowing yourself to be present in those moments and special times, you will create an amazing high school experience capturing each year like a photograph. 

If you are finding yourself caught up in the little things, try going out with friends, attending a sporting event, being outgoing in class, or even becoming part of a new club. After all, it is important to be involved and to make memories in the place you find yourself for four years.