GBU: Hello, Northwood!

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Get pencils, papers and (lots and lots of) coffee ready—it’s back to school season!  Yeah, we’re sad too.  But never fear, you have your favorite trio to help you along the way!

Dear Howler, it’s the first day, and I already failed a daily quiz, lost my pencil and forgot about a summer homework assignment I had to do.  Help!  How do I get myself together?

Good: You got this!  It’s only the first day.  Study hard for your next quiz; one bad daily quiz score won’t destroy your grade.  If your homework assignment is due on the first day, talk to your teacher to see if you can make it up somehow, or earn late credit.  But if you are lucky, and it is due later in the week, get working!  And after the ordeal, enforce good study habits on yourself so you do not have to go through the process again; there’s always something to learn after your mistakes.  And as for the pencil, ask a teacher or a friendly neighbor—just make sure to give it back!

Bad: They say first impressions are the only ones that matter, and they’re right. You’ve thrown away any chance you might have otherwise had at having a normal, fulfilling school year—don’t even bother showing up. Those quizzes and assignments don’t really matter in the face of things, right?  Just keep on marathoning “Riverdale” like you always do; things will work themselves out.  

Ugly: When I ask myself that question, I realize it’s just the system. Why do you need all the stress? Just leave school and discover who you were meant to be, because honestly, who’s going to remember you?

Dear Howler, I’m starting to have worries about my future now that school has started.  How do I know what path in life is right for me?

Good: Whether you’re a curious freshman exploring interests or a stressed senior starting your apps, this is a question all of us will face at some point in our high school careers.  But focus on what you know: What are you good at?  What genuinely interests you?  Your future typically lies in between these two questions.  But even though you think a certain career path may be for you, you may be wrong.  So delve deep into your interests beyond textbooks and Internet research—take up volunteer opportunities or internships.  There is no sure way to know your destiny in life, but it’s a good way to start!

Bad: The path in life that’s right for you is something you’ll be agonizing over for a long time. If you think you’ve made the right decisions, you’re wrong and you’re going to regret the choices you’ve made for the rest of your life. Don’t bother stressing out too much—you’ll just end up stuffing Cheetos into your mouth and crying at three in the morning like you always do. And really, why have it any other way? Own it. You are trash and you are proud!

Ugly: We all know our destiny in life: It’s sleep at the end of the day and three meals in between. Done. That’s your future. Now stop worrying.