Shay, Owatonna, Minnesota ~Senior Photographer

Seniors have the world at their fingertips.

High school seniors are not something I photograph very often, but after spending the evening with Shay, that may be changing!! My time spent hanging out with Shay took me back to high school, literally. One of our locations was at Owatonna Senior High School where I attended (longer ago than I’d like to admit). Talk about a trip down memory lane! I couldn’t help but think about myself as a senior and how certain I was about my future and how wrong I ended up being. So here are a few tips for seniors:

1. Don’t be too realistic with your career ambition.

Settling for the college major that has a clear-cut path can also lead you to the narrowest employment field. What happens if things change and that specific job is no longer needed or even worse that you don’t like your job? Don’t limit yourself! In the words of Walt Disney, “If you can dream it, you can do it.”


2. College isn’t always the path you need to follow.

Now don’t get me wrong, college is needed for many professions and I’m glad my doctors are highly educated, but you can achieve amazing things without sitting in a classroom. Entrepreneurs need creative ideas (which can’t be taught) to build a successful business. Yes, college coursework would help with aspects of running a business, but without the idea there’s nothing to run. Ideas for occupations that don’t require you to go into debt for years to obtain.


3. Travel.

Go out and see the world. You are at the age where climbing hundreds of stairs doesn’t make your lungs feel like they’re on fire. Your sense of being invisible will disappear the first time you hear your baby’s heartbeat. Use this to your advantage to take risks and enjoy life without limits. It doesn’t hurt to expand your worldview.  You are bound to learn from your experience. Here are some ways to save when you travel.


4. Give and give often.

Don’t worry, I know you’re broke so you don’t have money to give. You have gifts greater than money, those God-given talents are priceless. Share them and share them often. The more you use your talents, the stronger they will become. They are your advantage in every challenge that comes your way. Don’t worry if you’re anything like me you might not know what your gifts are yet, they will show up when you need them.


5. Surround yourself with people you want to be like.

When you’re with your friends/family it’s easy to get pulled into doing things you might usually do. You will unknowingly become like the people you spend the most time with. If all of your friends enjoy volunteering as a Big Brother/Big Sister, chances are you may see the appeal and try it out for yourself. Feel free to sever ties with those toxic relationships.


This list could be longer, but these were some of the big ideas that I wish I would have embraced at an earlier age. What would you add to the list?


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