For Staples student, attitude changes everything


Zoe Brown, Editor-in-Chief

I’ll be honest, it’s hard.


High school is hard, and life is hard, and I’m sure college is going to be hard, too. But it’s still pretty easy to enjoy yourself, if you know the secret.


Throughout my four years at Staples and my five years in Westport, the most important lesson I’ve come across is not one of u-substitution (sorry, Mrs. Gomez) or the influence of the media on politics (don’t take that the wrong way, Mr. Miller).


The most important lesson I learned in the past five years is that your attitude changes everything. That’s the secret.


When I moved here in eighth grade I had the wrong attitude. Everything about my reaction to the move was just wrong, wrong, wrong. I would come home from school and slam my bedroom door shut from any opportunity I had to make myself happy and become acclimated to my new life. I would take the train back to my old town, Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania on most weekends and pretend that that was still my life.  I would scream at my dad that I hated him for getting his new job and making us move here, away from all my best friends and my home for 14 years.


At the time, I was unaware that shutting down, being upset and wishing that I could change my situation would not solve anything. No matter how strongly I slammed my bedroom door, my problems were not going to just dissolve. No matter how much I yelled at my dad, we were not going to move back. No matter how often I went back to visit, I was not going to graduate with those friends.


Before I started high school, I had an epiphany. The only way I was going to be happy in my new town and at my new school was if I made myself happy.


So, I chose to be happy. I chose to move on and realize that however much I missed my old life, my wonderful childhood and all my friends, it was time to make the most of where I was now. Because while I couldn’t control some things, I could control my reaction and my attitude and my actions. It was hard at first, as are most things worth anything, but I chose to do things that made me happy. I wrote for Inklings and joined the Teen Awareness Group and started putting myself out there. When I started really putting in effort to make this place my new home, that’s when things began to finally fall into place.


And I know that sometimes things happen that make it hard to be happy all the time.


But these things, these inevitable situations, are not what you can control. Your attitude, on the other hand, is.


It’s like my favorite childhood author Dr. Seuss says in my favorite childhood book “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”, “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.”


To everyone sitting here reading this today, whether you’re graduating or starting high school next year or watching your students or your child get his or her diploma, I hope you know too that you can truly steer yourself any direction you choose…
…If only you have the right attitude.