A lot of things have happened in the past couple of weeks. For one thing, school started up again. Oh, and I bought new shoes. You might be wondering what these two things have in common, if anything. You’d be surprised by the connections between them.

 My new shoes are quite nice, really. There’s just the minor downfall of them being extremely painful to wear. Oh, sorry. Did I say minor? I meant major.

 For those of you who haven’t broken in a new pair of shoes before, let me tell you about it. The shoes in question are a pair of flats. They look lovely, but don’t feel nearly as nice. I have blisters and cuts on my feet, and am thinking of buying a stock in Band – Aids, considering the amount of them I have used.

 You might be asking yourself this question: if the shoes hurt so much, why don’t I just stop wearing them? Well, I could do that. But sooner or later, I would want or need to wear the shoes again, and then it would be the same pain all over again. So, really, I might as well get used to the shoes now so that I can enjoy wearing them later.

 And, believe it or not, the same philosophy can be applied to attending school.

 Transitioning to a new grade, or a new school altogether as I did this year, can be difficult. To be completely honest, when I walked into a school I had never been in before, knowing I would go there nearly every day for the next three years, I was a little bit terrified.

 There are so many things that can go wrong on the first day of school. Getting lost, going into the wrong classroom, and forgetting your lock combination are a few examples. If any of those happen, what is supposed to be a fun day of introductions could very well turn into a nightmare.

 After the first day, as I’m sure you know, comes the second. And then the third. And fourth. And fifth. And, before you know it, a whole week has passed.

 Did you enjoy it? Maybe not.

 Did you survive it? Yes.

 Just like breaking in a new pair of shoes, adjusting to a new school gets easier and less painful. Slowly, but surely, you learn the routines of the school. You memorize the routes between your classes, and drill your lock combination into your head.

 And before you know it, you’re into the groove of things just like you’ve been attending that school your whole life.

 This can also apply to adults adjusting to a new job, house, or lifestyle. In the beginning, there might be blisters. So hold your head high, put on a Band – Aid, and move on with things. Eventually, you will get used to the new part of your life, similar to how over time shoes become more and more comfortable.

My advice to students and adults alike is to take things one step at a time. Don’t try to break in your high heels, sneakers, and flats all at the same time; because the cuts and blisters from one shoe will only hurt more when you put on another.

 Instead, focus on one thing. Wear your sneakers every day on a walk until your feet have healed and you are comfortable enough to try out a new pair of shoes.

 Oh, and if I might offer one more piece of advice: try to avoid breaking in both a new school or job, while breaking in a new pair of shoes.