| School Daze |

School Daze: Epilogue 

There are a lot of other ways to be successful than being academic. You are so much more than the grades you get!


As told to Perel Stone

Dear Readers,

Thank you for following me on my journey from the first grade through adulthood. Maybe you’re thinking, “I wish I had a Mrs. Taub to believe in me, so I could also make friends and do well in school.”

Don’t wait for someone else to believe in you. Believe in yourself! You have so much to offer the world. But I’ve never even met you — so how do I know?

Well, did you wake up this morning? If Hashem put you in this world, that means you have a job to do here. Not only do you have a job — YOU ARE THE ONLY ONE in the world who can do what Hashem put you here to do. No one else in the whole entire world is exactly like you, so you better get to work and be the best YOU that you can be.

Some kids aren’t very good at school and they feel bad about themselves, because even when they try hard, they don’t get good grades. That’s okay — there are a lot of other ways to be successful than being academic. You are so much more than the grades you get!

Maybe you’re good at making people laugh, or you can tell when someone is sad and know how to cheer them up. Maybe you’re very creative or a good listener. I promise that you have A LOT of very special qualities. Even if you’re not sure exactly what they are just yet, there are TONS of things that make you special and unique. Start looking and you will find them.

If you’re having a hard time making friends, the best advice I can give you is to be a friend. Instead of looking for someone to be your friend, look for someone to whom you can be a friend. Look for someone who could use a compliment or a smile, and be the one to give it to them.

Be nice to everyone and try to listen to everyone. It hurts to talk and be ignored — you can make sure that no one is being ignored.

Believe that you are worth being friends with, and the people around you will believe it too. People enjoy being around people that are confident (that means they feel good about themselves).

A few specific ideas to keep in mind:

Watch kids who are well liked. Notice how they behave: how close they stand and how much they touch other people. Sometimes some very nice kids have a hard time making friends because they stand too close or touch other people more than is socially acceptable.

(Fun fact: did you know how close people stand and how much they touch each other is different in different countries and cultures? If you do something different than what is the norm in the place that you live, people may feel uncomfortable.)

Watch people’s faces when you’re talking to see if they’re interested in what you have to say. Try to think about what other people will think is interesting instead of just sharing every single thought that comes to mind. And if someone makes a comment about something you’ve said, listen carefully and respond.

Ask people about themselves and listen to their answers. People usually love to talk about themselves (as long as you’re not asking questions that are too personal) and it’s an easy way to get a conversation going. You can ask them what their favorite subject is in school or what they like to do in their free time.  Then when they tell you, you can ask even more about it.

Wishing each one of you hatzlachah in bringing out the tremendous potential Hashem has planted inside of you!


(Originally featured in Mishpacha Jr., Issue 925)

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