To The Class of 2014 -
A page has been turned, maybe ripped or possibly burned. Either way, the slate is clean and possibility is afoot. With possibility comes fear, but fear is overcome by preparation and action. If something is keeping you up at night, sometimes you have to bounce out of bed and fix it. The unknown is not solvable. Action is our lives most important virtue.
Young people are often criticised for having great ideas but an inability to act upon their dreams. My experience has taught me otherwise. It is important, however, to note that experience is the greatest medicine for that which we may hold in pre-judgement.
What does your dream look like? You may want to start a company, work for a corporation, bring water to desolate areas, teach, perform, or play. In any event, the abilities to dissect, quantify, qualify and plan are essential. Indeed, what you learned in science, math and history will not stay in your under-compensated returned books.
Consider this: Books are not worth reading if you don't take time to digest what you have read. People are not worth talking to if you do not listen to their advice. Technology is not worth investing in if you cannot socialize the system.
The system by which we read may change, we may lose friends, and apps are ever-evolving. The one constant we all face is that we cannot progress without other people. Your core knowledge may help you pass a test, your resume bullet points may get you an interview, and your social network may provide introductions; but if you cannot relate to people no degree can save you!
Revisit what you genuinely believe in and build a foundation for decision making. Our destiny is driven by our decisions. Ignore that which has been taught to you if you do not agree with the intent. There is no reason to dedicate yourself to something that does not ignite your interest. Recreate yourself every day. When you embrace change you fail more often than if you do not. If you do not embrace change you fail permanently.
Find someone to love, a soundtrack for your life, a team to follow, and an artistic outlet.
Allow no one to put a finger in your face.
Be humble in victory and accountable it defeat.
Allow yourself to cry but make sure you laugh more often.
Call your Mom on Mother's Day!
Eat and Drink what you want but be willing to work it off.
Treat the wait staff the same way you would the CEO.
Give people the benefit of the doubt.
With every ounce of knowledge you acquire make an effort to consider the alternative side of the argument.
Know that YOU are the judge & jury of your own destiny. No one's opinion matters more than your own. No one spends more time with you than you! Set expectations for yourself higher than those of others and over-perform!
Be willing to start at the bottom and work harder than anyone else. This is the only method for success that cannot be refuted.
Now is the time to dream big. Regrets dwell within the mansions of those who never tried to do what they genuinely enjoy. There is only one word to characterize success:
Leave the door open on your way out.....
Don't Forget to Remember!