Getting a high school do-over

high school hallway

Recently a 34-year old Texan woman was charged with fraud after posing as a 15-year old high school student.

Why Charity Johnson did it, isn’t clear, but I can relate. If I could go back to any time in my life for  a do-over, it would be my teens. To be clear, I’d never want to actually re-live those days. (Why go through Hell twice?). But, seeing Charity’s story, I couldn’t help but ask myself if was suddenly back in my 15-year old body with all my 44-year old wisdom what would I do differently? My answers were pretty clear:

  1. I’d spend more time developing quality friendships with fun, intelligent, interesting girls and less time chasing boys.
  1. I’d care less what people thought of me and more what I thought of them.
  1. I’d channel all that restless energy into something creative like writing, acting, creating music or dance rather than numbing it with drugs and alcohol.
  1. If there wasn’t an outlet for my passions (like when they cancelled the school newspaper), I’d take risks and create them.
  1. I’d love my body because it was fit and healthy and able to bounce back, not because it did or didn’t fit some ideal of what the media was attractive.
  1. I’d stop categorizing people into different cliques and get to know them as individuals.
  1. I’d learn how to save money.
  1. I’d value myself and my worth.
  1. I’d be a leader.

Looking at this list, two things struck me:

  1. How far I’ve come in the roughly 30 years since.
  2. How far I still have to go.

If you could go back to high school what would you change? How does that reflect changes you might need to make in current life? 

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