Guest Blog: 10 Tips to Master Your Senior Year, Olivia Louise, a Class of 2016 Tahoma High School Alumni {Tacoma Senior Portrait Photographer, Tacoma, WA}

10 Tips to Master Your Senior Year

By Olivia Louise

In honour of the school year starting (if it hasn't already) I decided to give you "10 Tips to Senior Year."  So I took it upon myself to chat with a few of my lovely friends and here is what we collectively came up together;

1. Go to every event possible: During my Sophomore/Junior year I hardly attended any events that weren't required. I tried to get out of every assembly possible and wasn't a fan of being spirited. But when Senior year hit that all changed. I went to every football game, home or away, and went to as many lacrosse games, soccer games, and basketball games as I could. Assemblies weren't as bad because I chose to have a better attitude about it, yes they were just about the same every time but it was the only time our entire school and class were together at once. Don't miss out on games, plays, assemblies, etc. just because you feel "too cool". The attitude you put in, is what you get out.

2. Do your work: I was/am a big time procrastinator. Unfortunately, I have become one of those people who writes better at 11:30 at night and only a limited about of time. 10/10 would not recommend becoming that person.  I have gotten slightly better, but when you get homework, do it then and there. Waiting until the last minute will just give you unnecessary stress that you don't need. Not to mention, the quicker you get it done the more free time you have to binge watch Criminal Minds or Game of Thrones like I do (;

3. Focus on YOUR future: Take time to figure out what you want to do after high school. Whether it be taking a gap year, going straight into the workforce, or getting secondary education, make sure it is what YOU want to do and that YOU are happy/comfortable with your decision. Don't worry about what everyone else is doing and do what is best for you. Senior year is the year you get to focus on who you will become and preparing yourself for your future.

4. Participate in Spirit Days: You are NEVER too cool to dress up in school/class colours, or to wear all neon, or whatever it may be. I rarely dressed up in all of the spirit days because I wasn't at school as long as everyone else (thank goodness for only having two classes a day), but when I did dress up for them I tried my hardest to go all out. It's 10x more fun with friends if you coordinate and they make for cute pictures!   

5. Take loads of pictures: I can't stress this point enough. I used to not be a big fan of taking pictures with friends because I was too embarrassed to ask (who knows why), but senior year came and I have never taken so many photos in my entire life. I have an entire wall in my room that is covered in pictures of me and my friends and it makes my heart warm every time I look at it. Although people change, memories don't and pictures capture that memory forever, so in the future you can tell your kids about your high schools days (;

6. Don't be afraid to let go: People will walk in and out of your life. Some stay for longer than others and that is okay. Senior year will really change your perspective on friendships and although it hurts to loose connections you may have had for years, some people are only meant to be apart of your life for a season or two. This is more likely to take place after you graduate but it's good to prepare yourself now rather than later. Friends go off to college and you loose touch but that's okay. Root for them and wish them nothing but success and happiness. 

7. Time flies: I'm sure this isn't the first time you'e heard this and it definitely won't be the last. You never actually believe anyone until it happens to you. Cherish every moment you have with friends and family. Take a step back when you're all together (holidays, BBQ's, get-togethers, etc.) and just watch the way everyone smiles and laughs and how their eyes light up when they talk about something they love or find deep interest in. It's a cool thing to witness.

8. Let your parents be obnoxious: This is especially true if you are the oldest child and they are going through this journey for the first time. They have no idea what to expect and are just as nervous and excited as you are. Their little boy or girl has grown up and is about to take on the world, they're going to be emotional. My mom wanted to take a thousand pictures over the littlest things because they were my "lasts" and it drove me insane. But remember to have patience with them, let them in on your plans in life and let them help you. 

9. Don't worry if ____ doesn't like you back: As someone who has never had a boyfriend I felt like it was part of the high school experience to have that boy for all of high school. Clearly I watched way too many movies and Troy Bolton set my expectations extremely high. No boy is going to break out in a full choreographed dance and sing beautifully (and if he does then wow, you found a gem). Don't worry about trying to find your "one true love" because after you graduate are you ever going to see each other? Probably not. Spend time building friendships and investing in yourself, making sure you are happy being by yourself. Learn to love yourself with or without a significant other. 

10. Have fun!: You are in your final year of high school! Take a break from doing homework on the weekend and spend it doing something fun. Go be adventurous and create stories and memories that you will actually remember when you're 20 years in the future. You aren't going to remember the thesis for one of your English papers, but you will remember that one time you ran around a city you barely knew, taking pictures with friends for a scavenger hunt, while it rained harder than you have ever seen. Maintain your grades but don't let it consume you. Say yes to invites instead of saying no. It's your last year of school and what you put in is what you will get out.  

Olivia is a recent high school grad, Ike and Tash Street Team Alumni headed to Central Washington University to study fashion.  She is also author of an incredible fashion blog titled Olivia Louise.  To follow her or keep in touch check her out at the following places online:

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