Things I Wish I Had Known At 16

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I think major change is a rite of passage when you are in secondary school, especially after the junior cert everything changes. After your exams you have to really start making decisions about where you want your life to go so you do the right subjects, have the right extra activities that will give you the extra edge, you have to decide if you are going to do transition year, but worst of all you find out who your true friends are. I went through a lot at 16 with my mental health that kinda stemmed from all these changes but some more than other. At 16 I found out who my real friends were and they were not the people I expected. Looking back I wish my 16 year old self knew what I know now.

1. Don't stress over grades! Yeah it is nice not having to worry about failing a class, but not getting straight A's is not the be all and end all of your school life.

2. Don't dumb yourself down. Okay, I agree being bullied for being smart does not rock, but there is nothing wrong with being smart. You work hard and you get the grades, just because someone may call you a name when you get something right in class is no reason to stop yourself doing well at something you love.

3. Girls can be a b***h! Going to am all girls school is not easy and being surrounded by girls who are 'cooler' than you or 'prettier' than you (or so you think) can be even harder. When girls get insecure they get turn into a b***h because that is their way of hiding that they really feel the same way as you. Try to not take their comments to heart, what they say is no reflection of who you are.

4. Don't trust people too much. Usually this is not a bad thing but in that case of 16 year old girls, watch your back! People are not always as nice as they seem.

5. Keep your worlds separate. Keep your friends outside school and your school friends apart! Girls can manipulate guys and your friendships will never be the same again.

6. Don't worry about not having a guy. Everyone around you has started dating but you have not, and that's okay! Don't worry about it, it's not a big deal as long as you have your true friends, your time will come.

7. Don't compare yourself to others. You may not be a size 8 blond, but you are perfect the way you are and don't let anyone put you down or feel like you are not enough.

9. You are enough! You are smart enough, pretty enough, popular enough (but who really needs to be popular!) and thin enough. If people want to waste their time picking you apart and trying to put you down, let them and just remember no matter what they say, you are enough!

10. Not everything is your fault. You can not control if people screw you over or if they walk away or chose to believe a bunch of lies "friends" tell them, it is not your fault. You need to learn to not take things out on yourself, no matter what anyone says things are not always your fault.

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