As the year comes to an end, we should reflect on the school year and begin to explore new opportunities during the summer break.

Regardless of grade level, reflection is key in discovering passions or interests that may have escaped of attention during the school year. To reflect is not simply to muse about the past and move on. We are in school for 10 months, and during that time, we have attained new friends, bonded with teachers and developed traits of determination from our coaches and directors that have changed our lives and attitudes. Reflection requires concentration and an open mind to contemplate how we have changed as individuals.

Growth from freshman to senior year may seem daunting, but with newfound skills and lifelong lessons gained from people around us, we must work to become better.

More importantly, our perception of the outcome indefinitely influences our attitudes. For example, we may have a tendency to begin a long-term project with a set attitude and expect rapid outcomes, but when we become impatient or the project plateaus, we can fall into a cycle of losing interest.

It is easy to wait for someone to give directions and follow what others say, but it does not help in the journey of finding one’s true self. In the high school years when we are searching and evaluating morals, skills and interests, having self-motivation and taking advantage opportunities can be ways to urge the search along. Similarly, there is no extra credit in life and we should need no incentives to complete obligations. We must do the tasks needed, whether they seem unexciting or not.

With an open mind, we can welcome the variety of options and spend the summer time efficiently. As the school year involves routines and deadlines, the summer break should be used for experiencing the new and exploring opportunities.

With two months to spend, we should use the time productively by volunteering, learning a new skill, catching up with old friends, and enjoying family. In addition, getting a “head start” during the summer can facilitate the transition to the tougher courses in the next year.

Reflection and exploration of new opportunities can change our attitudes, thus improving our abilities to overcome future obstacles.

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