Even if the end of high school doesn’t mean the end of your cheerleading days, things are about to change. You’re going to head off to college; get a job; do “grown up” tasks like laundry and grocery shopping. When facing these new stepping-stones of life, turn to cheer for help. That’s right; there are a lot of aspects of cheerleading that you can use in the real world. Find out how! Scheduling and organizing Who knows how to balance a schedule better than a cheerleader? Between school, homework, practice, competitions, and social activities, cheerleaders quickly learn that the only way to remember everything is to organize their calendar. This will help out a lot in college when you need to remember dates for tests, essays, registering for classes, and social events. Multi-tasking How many times have you simultaneously stretched and studied for a test? You probably can’t even count the number of times you’ve mentally rehearsed your routine while in the shower. Cheerleaders multi-task all the time. This trait comes in handy when you find yourself buried under multiple projects that all need to be completed at once. You’ve mastered the skill of balance – bouncing back in forth between tasks and finding time to complete them all, even if it’s at lunch or while you’re doing the laundry. Performing Let’s face it. A big part of nailing an interview or class presentation is performance. You’ve got to act confident, enthusiastic, and knowledgeable. Cheerleaders know all about the art of performance. At competitions, games, or pep rallies, you can’t look nervous (even if you are!) or confused (even if you forget a part!). You’ve got to be confident and push through, even if there’s an unexpected bump in the road. Tackle an interview or class presentation like you would a cheer performance (minus the toe touches and cheer uniform). Handling disappointment During your cheerleading years, there’s probably been a time where you didn’t make the team you wanted, messed up a performance, or didn’t win at the competition. You’ve learned how to handle disappointment and accept second (or third or fourth) place. In college, at a job, and in life, you’ll experience disappointment or what is sometimes perceived as “failure” (even though it isn’t!). You won’t get the internship; you’ll get a B on an assignment; you won’t get the highest grade on a test. As a cheerleader, you know how to get your spirits back up and move on, knowing you’ll conquer the next approaching hurdle. Trying again (and again) Not everything comes easily. Some things are harder to master or learn than others and you need to know how to keep working at it without giving up. This trait is especially necessary at work. You’ll be expected to improve, to learn new and harder tasks, and to redo an assignment if need be. Luckily, as a cheerleader, you’re familiar with the mantra “try again.” You know that some things take time and practice! By using your cheerleading experience, you won’t give up if you don’t succeed at first. You’ll keep at it until you’ve got it down!. Working as a team This is perhaps the biggest characteristic you’ve mastered as a cheerleader. After years of practicing and performing with your squad, you know the importance of teamwork. At school, at work, and in life, you’ll need to work with others. Even if you don’t get along with all of them, as a cheerleader you’ve learned how to effectively contribute to a team task and work with others in a professional manner. Whew! You may not have realized just how many traits you’ve mastered, thanks to cheerleading! Whether you cheer after high school or just hold onto the fond memories with you in the form of pictures and scrapbooks, you’ll always have the characteristics of a cheerleader. What do you think is the greatest thing you’ve learned as a cheerleader? What are other traits cheerleaders learn?