This girl is goals: Reagan tells us how to survive high school
Teens are capable of anything: running a business, raising cash for a cause, making a difference, inspiring others. There are great girls everywhere—and in our new “Great Girls” series, created in partnership with Barbizon Modeling, we’ll shine a light on remarkable young women with incredible stories. Whether you get some solid ideas or just some serious inspo, take notes on these top-notch teens—and maybe we’ll be sharing *your* story someday soon.
She may only be 17, but Reagan has gained a lot of self-confidence and wisdom from her experiences in high school. From dealing with mean girls to getting involved in *tons* of extracurriculars (think: student council, track, volunteering and more) all while maintaining her grades, she has learned how to conquer any school sitch. And now she's sharing some of her top tips for surviving high school below.
Girls’ Life: What extracurricular are you most passionate about and why?
Reagan: During my freshman year in high school I tried to get involved in several things, especially ones I was not sure I would like. I love both student council and track. In track, there aren't separate teams for each grade, so we are all on one team which is cool. Everyone gets to be together every day at practice and we all push each other to improve.
GL: Are there any particular types of clubs or organizations that you recommend girls get involved with?
Reagan: Other than sports, which are super important, I'd definitely recommend community service, like volunteering at a local homeless shelter or organizing a charity run. They say that to feel good about yourself, you should make others feel good. Accomplishing something great is a wonderful feeling and helping people in the process is even better. Little things like donating your old books in a book drive may seem small to you, but they may make a big difference to someone else. Happiness is contagious!
GL: How do you handle a super busy sched without getting overwhelmed?
Reagan: Being so involved in school, sometimes things overlap and it's tough to choose where to spend my time. Prioritizing and managing my time has been a huge help in keeping a positive outlook. It's not easy to get going on homework after a long day or a hard practice, but the sooner you start, the sooner you are done. I also always find time to relax especially on super hectic days. A bad day is only a bad day if you make it bad. One tiny thing can ruin your whole day if you let it, so I try not to sweat the little things, and keep moving forward.
GL: Have you ever dealt with mean girls or bullies? How did you handle it?
Reagan: I used to have a friend who always brought people down for how they looked or acted. Everyone, including myself, was scared to confront her. I realized that I did not want to be associated with a person like that—I wanted to make people feel better about themselves, not worse. Girls gossip, that's the way it is, but nobody should let gossip and rumors get to them because that is all it is: gossip and rumors. Standing up for myself and being confident in the person I am has helped to make me a more positive person, and I am excited to get out of bed and start the day.
GL: What advice could you give girls about standing up for themselves?
Reagan: Honestly, there is no better feeling than knowing you can do it. Don’t waste your time wondering what someone will think. I have found the best way to avoid mean girls is to “kill them with kindness.” Being the better person will always feel better in the end so don't stoop to their level.
GL: Do you think these experiences have made you stronger or helped you to grow?
Reagan: I belive that every experience, from playing sports to dealing with mean girls, has made me into a better, more positive person. Once you decide that you are okay with who you are, nobody can bring you down. I am confident in the person I am—I know that I will make mistakes, big and small, but everyone makes mistakes now and then. Because of my mistakes, I have become stronger. When life gets tough, it's easy to give up but I strive to keep going even when I want to stop. Every day is a new day and a new story.
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