Often times adolescents get bogged down in their school work. They go to school, go home, do homework, eat dinner, do some more homework, and then go to bed. Maybe they have one other activity that they do in addition to that. It is incredibly important for adolescents to be involved in a lot. They should have a few things they do other than school. Not just school. There are so many positive impacts from being involved in a lot. Kids stay out of trouble, they learn how to manage their time, make new friends, find their passions, and these activities are even a resume builder! People lose interest in activities, so it’s important for them to be involved in several activities. If you only do one, and then lose interest and quit then you don’t have anything to do and you become lost, confused, and bored. If there’s anything a kid shouldn’t be it’s bored! Being involved in a few activities after school is key in an adolescent’s life; this is where they will learn how to manage their time, make friends outside of school, find their passions, and build a resume!
When you were a child your parents probably got you into several different activities. I know I did ballet, golf, basketball, soccer, hiking, and music. You didn’t have to worry about school as much either because you were still at that age where school was fun, homework was fun, and you were friends with everyone in your class. This was your first experience being immersed in activities. Your first chance to see what you loved. As we get older, we start to focus more on school. It takes a lot more time after school too and we start to dwindle down our activities. Some people cut out too much. They stick to either one thing or nothing. They think that if they can master that one activity then that will be all they need. That’s risky. They could lose interest, or something could happen to them forcing them to stop. Then, at that point, they have nothing. They just have school. When you have a few activities it’s ok when one does not work out because you have a couple others to fall back on. Some people believe that they should focus in on one activity and school so that they are able to perfect both. While that may be important to do as you get older, cutting out other activities when you’re still young could leave you with nothing when you lose interest.
It’s important to put yourself out there. Choose something that you would’ve never imagined liking. Chances are, you will find that you love this and are more passionate about this than anything else you’ve ever done. That’s what happened to me. I stepped out of my comfort zone and joined a teaching program a CSU. I never wanted to become a music teacher. Now I have taught sectional I realized the joy that comes with teaching. Something I would’ve never known unless I had tried. This is another reason why it’s important to be involved in more.
Several studies have shown benefits you would’ve never thought of that come from being involved in several activities. These benefits include better time management, learning how to prioritize, raising self esteem, and so many more. One wouldn’t necessarily notice that their after school activities help with each of these. They don’t realize that in order to go to their club after school they have to find another time to do their homework and other commitments. They’re able to find extra time throughout the day that would’ve normally wasted.
Building a resume is hard. It may feel impossible when you don’t necessarily have any work experience, so you need to think of all of the activities you’ve done too! If you were only involved in one sport then you’re not going to have much to put down on there. Let’s say that you’ve been volunteering for a few organizations, babysitting a little, and you also do some sports. Then you are going to be add a lot more; even when the volunteering or the babysitting didn’t take too much time!
There are endless benefits to being involved in several activities. While it is important to not overwork yourself or become overwhelmed, it’s just as or more important to get involved. Who knows, maybe you’ll be like me and hesitantly join something and then decide to pursue a career in it! “Being exposed to lots of ideas and interests helps you learn what you’re truly passionate about and maybe more importantly introduces you to people who share that passion” (Prentice).
Burgess, Joy. “Extracurricular School Activities and the Benefits.” More 4 Kids. N.p., 2016. Web. 12 Mar. 2016. <http://education.more4kids.info/168/extracurricular-school-activities/>.
Mayfield, Julie, and Lindsay Mayfield. “5 Reasons for Getting Involved in College—And How to Go About It.” US News. N.p., 13 Sept. 2011. Web. 10 Mar. 2016. <http://www.usnews.com/education/blogs/twice-the-college-advice/2011/09/13/5-reasons-for-getting-involved-in-college-and-how-to-go-about-it>.
Baker, Sawyer. “Why Getting Involved in Your Community Is Important.” Education Empowers. N.p., 29 Jan. 2014. Web. 12 Mar. 2016 <https://iowacollegestudentaidcommission.wordpress.com/2014/01/29/why-getting-involved-in-your-community-is-important/>.
“The Importance of Extracurricular Activities for Teens.” I Have a Plan Iowa. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 Mar. 2016.a<https://www.ihaveaplaniowa.gov/Home/Article.aspx?articleId=IGeYH2kUApurN7JfmoFVeQXAP3DPAXXAP3DPAX&level=3XAP2FPAX6J7I3kztATGuYyXAP2BPAXDahIQXAP3DPAXXAP3DPAX>.
Prentice, Elizabeth Waterbury. “Importance Of Being Involved.” Telephone interview. 13 Mar. 2016.
Offerman, Nick. Paddle Your Own Canoe: One Man’s Fundamentals for Delicious Living. New York: Dutton, 2014. Print.