The undeniable truth is that life offers more opportunities than an individual can take on. I have always tried to accomplish more than humanly possible, and most of the time it takes a turn for the worst. It all comes down to achieving the perfect balance of things you WANT to do, and things you HAVE to do. This often applies to cheerleading and schoolwork.

Cheerleading has always been a priority for me, and although they often conflict, I know that missing a cheer-related activity is never an excuse for unfinished, or second-rate schoolwork. This means one must try to achieve the perfect balance. Perfection is rarely stumbled upon, and making it work perfectly takes dedication, but it is often necessary when it comes to this balance. Sometimes this means that schoolwork has to be taken care of using alternative methods. Doing homework in car, or in between full-out routines at practice was always normal for me in high school. Now that I am in college, I have to dedicate even more time to academics, and my cheer schedule has become more demanding. I knew that I had to do my absolute best in both activities, so I looked for advice and this is what I came up with.

Number One: Where will you be in the future, and what will you be doing? Although cheerleading offers career options, how likely is it that you will have a cheer related career than one that is not? Education will provide you with knowledge for your future and it is absolutely necessary to put school first. Do your homework, pay attention in class, always go to school, and study for tests; you’ll thank yourself in the long run.

Number Two: Cheerleading can also teach you valuable lessons for the future. Instead of just cheering for the sake of cheering, look for the underlying themes and lessons in the sport and use what you learn in the future. Hard work, determination, being passionate about what you do, and never settling are all lessons I have learned from being a cheerleader. These have not only helped me short-term, but I am certain they will still be relevant in the future.

Number Three: As Tim Gunn would say, “Make it work”. As I briefly mentioned before, life isn’t perfect, and it never will be. Learn to accept this and make it work for you. Find time to study or do your homework. Learn to stay up late, or wake up early and finish assignments. If cheerleading and school are important to you, then find time to devote to both. You may have to skip a Friday night out with your friends, or cut down on your social media time, but in the future you’ll be glad you did. I can’t remember a time during a test when I wish I would have watched an hour more of television rather than studying an hour longer.

Think about your future first and foremost. Although we all love to cheer, we still need a solid academic foundation. It is cool to be smart, so make sure you are doing all you can to find time to learn from both school and cheerleading. If you do all that you can to be successful, I guarantee you will be. Good luck!

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