For the last four years, high school seemed like my whole entire world. Although I always knew it would end, it felt like that was too far away. I always like to think of myself as a very optimistic person, but the environment of my high school was honestly exhausting. I know that grades are important, but the competition that arose among everyone made it hard to even focus on class. When everyone talks about their plans for the coming years, I loved to hear all of there different routes they were taking. It doesn't matter if someone going to Harvard or if they're not going to school at all. It's their life and you must let them live it. Also, there is no benefit to discouraging them. Up until now, I have always been afraid of not getting the approval of my peers. From my grades, clothes, music and even interests I always wanted to make sure I wasn't "weird". As cliche as it sounds, being "weird" is probably the best thing you can be. The people who really succeed in this world aren't the ones with a narrow, elitist attitude. The people who will really make something of themselves are those who keep an open mind and go their own way. I know it's hard to lose all of your inhibitions, I think that trying to is half the battle. I still don't know exactly what I want to do with my life, but I know one thing for sure. I'm the only one who is going to decide it, and I won't let others discourage me.