One of the reasons movies like “The Breakfast Club” and “Mean Girls” continue to be favorites among movie viewers is because nearly everyone can relate to the high school stories and stereotypes shared in those films. Every school has cliques and they range from the popular kids to the “nerds” and include everyone in between the two polar groups.
The trick to high school is remembering you are entering the most shallow period of your life. You will be judged first and foremost on how you look, act, and, dress. The smart “nerdy” kids are probably rolling their eyes at this statement (and it is well deserved) but, unfortunately, it is the truth.
How You Look
Granted — there isn’t much you can do to your face, but, you can enhance what you have by taking a few simple steps each day to present the best possible you. Keep your hair and body clean, and, try to prevent acne break-outs as much as possible by watching your diet, and, use proper skin care products for your skin type. If you have more severe acne, you may need prescription strength topical treatments to get your acne under control and that will require a visit to a doctor.
For girls — do wear makeup that enhances your best features. It’s going to take practice to get it down right, and, your friends aren’t really a good source for makeup tips; they’re going to be as inexperienced as you, so, it is best to ask for help from your Mom or other Mother-figure in your life or go to a department store and allow them to make you over so that you look great and age appropriate. (Keep in mind, most will want you to purchase at least some of the products demonstrated on you.)
And, while it is a touchy subject, weight does factor into the popular clique’s decision whether you will be a member or just someone to mock and tease simply because you carry extra weight. The best defense, slim down, but, don’t go on any crash diets. Have your Mom or Dad take you to a doctor and the doctor will put you on a diet that is best for you. If for any reason (usually a medical reason) you are not able to lose weight, then at the very least do keep yourself clean and neat at all times, and, do wear makeup to enhance your best facial features.
How You Act
This is where things become complicated and blurry. What might be acceptable to your circle of friends outside of school, may make you or your clique a target of teasing and ridicule in school. In order to survive high school, you’re going to have to conform to fit in (that is if you don’t want to be met by cruel remarks every day.)
Start by acting like you are the most important person in the word. (It probably goes against every fiber of your being and you will probably feel like you are betraying yourself, but, if you want to be part of the popular clique or just want to fit into the masses between the popular kids and the nerds, this is what it is going to take.) So, stand up straight, walk with confidence, and, do not mumble when you speak.
Confidence is like a popularity magnet. Why? Because everyone will think you have your act together and other kids are going to want to know your secret, and, then they might even try to dress and act like you. Yes, it really is this shallow and yes, this tactic actually DOES work.
Selecting your clubs and activities is just as important as wearing confidence as if it was you favorite shirt. For whatever reason, in almost all schools, the quickest route to popularity is becoming a cheerleader or football player. It is almost (but not completely 100%) guaranteed that becoming a cheerleader or football player will gain you instantly popularity.
As for everyone else… Join the clubs and activities you like best, but, if you’re seeking out friends and trying to be popular then all other sports from basketball to baseball is the way to go. Following or sometimes equal to sports clubs are social clubs. It can range from everything from being a member of the Student Board to Dance Committees to Key Club. And, the key to these clubs is that you actually participate and allow people to get to know you. Being shy and sitting in the corner isn’t going to win friends — that much is certain! So, be a joiner, and, limit yourself to two or three activities so you can really give your very best to those clubs and activities.
How to Dress
If you are attending a school that requires uniforms then, of course, you will need to conform and wear the pre-determined outfit, however, what you wear outside of school is just as important as if your school didn’t have a uniform code. Again, remember, you are in the shallowest part of your life, and, clothing does matter. So, follow the same formula as below for high school students who do not need to wear a uniform.
In the simplest terms, always look your best. This means your clothes are clean and current, and, you don’t have to spend a fortune to look great. Teen Vogue and Seventeen magazines offer great tips on how to copy designer lout breaking the bank. It is as simple as taking the magazine with you and copy the look you see in stores that you can afford. And, don’t get discouraged, you may have to visit several stores to complete just one outfit, but, again, remember you’re in Shallow City (also known as high school) so, if you want to fit in, it has to be done.
If you are fortunate to be able to afford better or designer clothes make no apologies for wearing them. Yes, there will be jealousy in some cases, but, as long as you don’t brag about the fact, you should be fine, and, be proud your parents can afford to buy you the best!
Good luck and have a great school year!