Ben+Wieland

Ben Wieland

Trying new activities is worth your time

If I could repeat my last four years, there are very few things I actually did — activities, classes, extracurriculars — that I would choose to undo. Instead, most of my regrets are decisions I didn’t make, or opportunities I passed up on. In high school, even when something doesn’t seem like your perfect cup of tea, it’s usually worth your time to at least give it a shot. 

My best personal example of this doesn’t even come from during the school year. During the summer between my freshman and sophomore years, I had the opportunity to travel with the cross country team on a sightseeing, hiking, and running trip across Colorado. It was a tough decision to go — I wasn’t a particularly good athlete, and had just a few good friends on the team. Nevertheless, I decided to join the team on the trip, and it was absolutely the right decision; I had a blast and grew closer with everyone, especially my roommates. 

Now, just because you enjoy something doesn’t mean you need to do it for all four years. Some of my best memories — that trip, late-night debate tournaments with my friends, shootarounds during freshman basketball practice — came from activities that I quit before even becoming an upperclassman. 

By the time you become a senior, it’s usually good to narrow yourself down to a select few commitments — otherwise, you risk becoming overwhelmed. Before then, though? My advice would be to try every thing, activity, or experience you possibly can and see what sticks. 

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