Students have a lot to balance

High school allowed me to branch out and explore new activities and sports. As a senior, I am involved in soccer, swim and dive, and marching band. Besides sports, I am an active member of NHS, Key Club, MVP, and DECA. 

From day one of freshman year to now, I have been stuck with all these activities– dreading the practices, but excited for the people I see and the big performances. It was stressful for sure when I started and while that pressure lingers, I have learned to handle it in my own way.

The biggest advice I can offer as an involved student is to know how much you can handle. Sports and clubs are big time consumers. For me, I swim every day in the fall after school and I rehearse marching band every day in the morning. In the spring, I practice soccer every day around spring break until the end of the year. The clubs I do are scattered in between all the sports I do.

People say that getting as involved as possible makes it a memorable experience. While high school is a chance to make the most of it, it is not worth stressing every day because you have no time for anything else. Leave some breathing room for yourself. My swim coach always tells our team that we are students before we are athletes. Your academics and your mental health come first before anything.

My last piece of advice is if you are unhappy in a sport or activity, take a deep breath and focus on why you started. 

There were times when I wanted to throw in the towel and I almost did so many times. I did most of my activities because they were fun and something I was passionate about. Some, however, did not quite stick to me until last year. 

Take a moment and reflect on how far you came and why you started. That same love you had when starting something may rekindle. If it does not, there is no shame in quitting. Never waste time on something that you constantly  dread.

Being involved is never a bad thing. It can be fun for people to create memories and form lasting bonds with the team around you. It can be overwhelming to start with. The key to balance is knowing your own limits and remembering why you started.