“Aloha, Hauʻoli kēia hui ʻana o kāua”, which translates to “hello, pleased to meet you,” is what I would tell you if I lived back home in the beautiful island of Oahu, Hawaii; however, I no longer live in Hawaii and majority of the people I encounter will not know what I am saying.  My family was absolutely lucky enough to have been able to live in one state, Hawaii, for 12 years; but, our time was up and we had gotten new orders from the military to drop everything and move.  For my entire 16 years of life, I have been a military child and with that title comes the responsibility of moving to new places.  

I understand that not every reader that comes across this article is a military dependent; however, I believe that moving from one home to the next, for anybody, is physically, emotionally, and mentally challenging.  I moved to the southern region of the United States, which is extraordinarily different from Hawaii, after my freshman year of high school. During my freshman year, I participated in student activities as a cheerleader and the class of 2018’s freshman president; I was even voted “Most Spirited” at the end-of-the-year freshman assembly.  Never would I have thought that my family would have to drop everything and leave a place so beautiful and family oriented after 12 years.

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Whether you’re a new student in a new school or a freshman going into college, these tips will help you transition into a new home a little bit easier.  

Reconnect and make new friends

Although some may claim that this is an old cliché, making new friends and keeping your old ones are very important.  I lost many friends this year, but I managed to stay and get in contact with two people; one happened to have moved out of Hawaii a month after me so we write letters (I know, it’s quite archaic), tweet, Snapchat, and text each other constantly.  At your new school or college, try joining a club or sport that you’re familiar with whether that is cheerleading, student council, show choir, or even Harry Potter club. By joining a club or sport that you’re familiar with, you’d be able to break the ice a little bit easier by talking about a topic dealing with the club or sport.  Also, join clubs within the community to broaden your horizons.

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Reflect on your experiences

Now is the time to whip out that blank notebook that has been collecting dust. This past school year, I wrote down every major milestone, event, and even silly conversations in a journal or my phone.  Then, when the school year ended, I looked back on my notes and journal entries and reflected on the school year.  By taking the time to reflect on your experiences, you’ll be able to decide on what you like, didn’t like, what worked, and what didn’t work.  Also, your journal is a great memento of your time as a high school student.

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Rejuvenate and take time off

Mental health days are days in which you take time off from work or school and relax. Although some may think otherwise, I believe that your mental health should come first especially when you’ve experienced a major change in your life (in this case, the major change is moving to a new place).  Every once in a while, you may feel overwhelmed by the changing environment around you and don’t worry, that is understandable.  When you start to feel like you’ve hit rock bottom, then you should take the time to rejuvenate, hydrate, and rest.  Remember, your mental health is just as important as your physical one so, take the time to adjust and understand your body’s limits and needs.

All in all, you should make the most out of your school year. Not everybody can say that they have the experience of moving to new places. For readers that are currently in high school, your transition into college will be easier if you’ve moved places before. Remember, take the time to reconnect, reflect, and rejuvenate and you’ll have an easier time than you think.


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Photo Credit: http://www.astonhotels.com/hotels-and-condos/our-destinations/hawaiian-islands
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