On the Homestretch: Advice Your High School Senior Needs to Hear

Powerful advice from others who have walked in their shoes...

by Nancy Reynolds

This post: On The Homestretch: Advice Your High School Senior Needs to Hear

Written by: Marybeth Bock

Ahhh… seniors everywhere are finally on the homestretch. Just a couple of months to go and they’ll be saying goodbye to a life they’ve known for years and starting an entirely new and exciting chapter in their lives.

But before the year comes to a close for your senior, there are a few things you might want to share with them – advice to focus on, advice that will guide them, and advice to remind them that these are some of the best and most fleeting days of their lives.

 So… here’s a bit of solid advice your high school senior needs to hear from others who have walked in their shoes.

On The Homestretch: Advice Your High School Senior Needs to Hear


Your Grades STILL Matter

I get it… you’ve been working hard in school for decades. You finally got accepted into college, you’re in the final few months of your senior year and you just want to chill out and enjoy time with your friends. But heads up, now is not the time to chillax! Your grades still matter.

Maybe not quite as much as they did when you applied to college, but they sure as heck still matter to the admissions officer who put the “accepted” stamp on your college application. If your grades (and subsequently, your GPA) drop substantially some colleges will retract their offer of admission. Plus, if you bomb a required class, it might affect your ability to graduate with your class, not to mention having to retake the class over the summer, which is a huge pain. Bottom line, keep your “senioritis” in check!

Try Not to Freak Out About Your Future

The jump from high school to college, the military, or a career is a huge one. You’re bound to feel overwhelmed, worried, and even scared, at times. Just keep in mind that the decisions you’re making today aren’t set in stone. Your path, your decisions, your direction… they’re all fluid.

The road to adulthood is long, winding, and full of chances to make a U-turn, take a detour or pick a different exit. Keep this great quote in mind: “It’s not too late to change direction if you’re not at peace with the life you have. Don’t put a deadline on your pursuit of happiness.” (~Dodinsky) No matter what, you’ll always be in control of your destiny. Remember that!

Squeeze in as Many Memories as You Can

Attend those Friday night games, go to the pep rally, get glammed up and go to the homecoming dance and prom, take part in the senior parade, the senior breakfast, and senior field day. Also, be sure to have your friends sign your yearbook (and sign theirs.)

Whatever your high school senior traditions are, join in on the fun! The harsh reality is, after high school, everyone scatters and goes in their own direction so staying in touch isn’t quite as easy. In fact, some classmates you may never see face-to-face again. Embrace this time while you’re all together. Laugh, get silly, have fun, and make as many amazing, wonderful memories as you can! You’ll never regret it!

Spend Time with Your Family – You’re Going to Miss Them!

Life is about to shift in a big way, especially if you’re venturing off to college, heading to the military, or moving out on your own to start your career. Your annoying little brother won’t be around to barge into your room. Your mom won’t be making your favorite breakfast on a Saturday morning, and your grandpa won’t be sitting in the bleachers watching you play soccer and taking you out for ice cream afterward while he shares his words of wisdom.

I know you want to spend time with friends and your life is busy with school, sports, extracurriculars, and your job, but don’t forget to enjoy time with your family.  You may not realize it now, but you’re going to miss them – those hugs from your mom and dad, the surprise of finding your bed was made for you, your dad’s silly (and sometimes, annoying) jokes, and walking in the house to mom’s home-cooking. Sure, you might be home for summers, breaks, or visits but it won’t feel quite the same. Relish these days while you can.

Lean on Your Parents… They’re There for You

No matter how much you struggle, what major “Ls” you take, or how you fumble, your parents will always have your back. It’s never easy fessing up to your mistakes but go to them with your concerns, worries, problems, and major foul-ups. (Trust me, you’ll have a few!)

Even though life might be a far cry from when they were teenagers, they still “get” how hard it can be to grapple with all the challenges you’re faced with. They want to hear from you, they miss you terribly, they love you, and they’re always standing by with advice, guidance, or just a shoulder to lean on. They’re there for you…let them be part of your life.

Thank The People Who Helped You Along the Way

Think about teachers who opened your eyes to new ways of thinking and coaches who molded you into becoming a leader and team player. How about that tutor who helped you pass Chemistry? Or the youth leader who encouraged you to be compassionate toward someone who had wronged you in the past?

Before you take that final walk down the halls of your high school, take the time to thank them. Visit the teachers or coach personally, write them a thank you note and slide it under their door, send them a text, or make that phone call.  These are people who altered the trajectory of your life in a good way… let them know how appreciative and grateful you are that they cared. I promise, they will remember your words forever…

Your high school years are unlike any other time in your life. But the end is nearing… so soak in all the fun and excitement, memories, and activities! Don’t let these last couple of months slide by without making the absolute most of them – you’ll remember these days forever…

Marybeth Bock, MPH, is Mom to two young adults and one delightful hound dog. She has logged time as a military spouse, childbirth educator, college instructor, and freelance writer. She lives in Arizona and thoroughly enjoys research and writing – as long as iced coffee is involved. Her work can be found on numerous websites and in two books. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram.


If you enjoyed reading, “On the Homestretch: Advice Your High School Senior Needs to Hear,” check out these other posts!

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To My Teen Heading to College, Let These Lessons Sink In Before You Go

A “Willingness to Learn” is Key to Your Teen’s Success in College

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