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Stay Positive and Feel the Feels

By Avah S., Grade 12
Be positive. It sounds so cliché, doesn’t it? Yet, a few weeks ago, I found myself giving one of my friends this advice, and gosh, did I hate myself as soon as I said it. I know when I am given this advice, I cringe and roll my eyes, because it’s so easily said, and so difficult to act upon.

Every day, we make choices. These decisions do not necessarily have to do with what time we choose to leave our room to go to breakfast or what clothes we choose to wear to sports, but they can relate to much more emotional choices. It isn’t as if when we wake up, we are faced with the decision to make today a good day or a bad day, because that just isn’t realistic for a lot of us. But there are certain things you can do to change your outlook on the day or on an event or a commitment.

For me, I try to recall being little and marveling at life rather than picking out the things that weigh on me. As my mother would tell me, only you have the power to change the course of your day, no matter what track you’re on. 

Once again, this seems so much easier said than done. But recently, I have been working on trying to be more positive myself. I had been so comfortable living in my negativity that I had forgotten what positivity even felt like, how much lighter it is to carry with you every day. Of course, being positive is difficult sometimes, especially when you are surrounded by negativity, which is so easy to feed off of from others. It is the easier option to feel negative when negativity is emanating from everyone else.

But have you realized how much more satisfying and rewarding it is to share in someone else’s positivity? I have always been grateful to the person who helped me feel more positive, and I hope I can be that individual for someone else, just to brighten their day.

For me, those people have been Coach K during my prefect duties, Quinn in Lit, Lana during our dinner dates in LeBaron, Camryn during our chats in the library, my entire advisor group making me laugh, Gloria in Human Geo, Mr. G, Mr. Van Dyke and Chaz during Soundtrax Club, Mr. Chandler and Ms. Hessian with our shared jokes, and I can’t forget Maddie and our job at the Tuck Shop. All of these individuals and more have helped brighten my day and have ultimately made it easier to be more positive. These people being a beacon for positivity has helped nudge me every day in the direction of positivity. And you can help yourself too, simply by putting a smile on your face. 

Now, I don’t want you all thinking this means you cannot be sad or feel anything other than joy, because that is also not realistic. In order to feel all the good things, you have to allow yourself to go through hard times, to feel those deep and heavy emotions and welcome them. Allow yourself to assign value to every emotion you feel, because they all come from somewhere and should be appreciated. It is a gift to feel and to be moved.

But do not linger on these troublesome emotions for too long, do not let them have that power over you, because you have the power to change your outlook, not them.

Going into your day remembering everything is temporary means that even the weight of challenges is also temporary. There is always room for light and joy, you just have to search a little harder for them sometimes. Feeling is difficult, but as an emotional person, I’ve realized you can feel so much, so why restrict yourself to feelings that tarnish your day to day? 

So, heading into the last leg of the race, AKA the last term of school, do something for yourself and try your best to appreciate. Try to see things with a silver lining, because it relieves so much weight off your shoulders. Try something new, meet new people, and thank the ones who have been a beacon of light to you. Maybe, even try to be a beacon of light for them. 
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