Yes, it is that time again. Over the past 4 years, you have had some of the greatest experiences, as well as some of the worst experiences, of your lives. Hopefully, you have made friends of enemies. You may have also made some enemies of friends. Don’t worry about that so much, it happens to everyone.
Some of you are going to college. For some of you, this is a great idea. Honestly, for some of you this might be a mistake. Don’t worry about that so much either, we all make mistakes. As far as mistakes go, this one is really one of the minor ones. College, even if you get some “useless” degree, looks good on resumes and might even be required to get some jobs.
Some of you are not going to college but will be going to work. You will be told that you are making a mistake. You might be. I’m here telling you that you would be making a bigger mistake if you wasted time in school without putting your heart and mind into it. You could be making a bigger mistake if you wait to experience the real world until after college. For right now, don’t worry too much about it. In the end, everything will work itself out.
Many of you have either found or lost love. Some have done both. Remember every such relationship. Learn from the mistakes that you made and try not to repeat them. Remember every relationship, but never, EVER talk about the details with the next relationship. There is no need, and nothing you say can end well for you in the end.
Many of us have been waiting for this time for a long time. As you can see, our country is in some dire straits, and we don’t have anybody running the show. Our current politicians, on both sides of the aisle, have forgotten many of the things you had to learn in order to get your diploma. Some of you will be taking the reins in a few short years, and I hope you paid enough attention to avoid making the same mistakes my generation has made.
I wish we could have given you the planet you deserve. I wish we could give you the country you were promised for many years. But wishing won’t make it so, and we have to deal with what we are given, not what we wish for.
Usually, I put together a list of 10 or more things that you should attempt or do now that you have graduated. I could do that today as well, but right now, in the world you live in, there is only one piece of advice I can give you that will help you.
Stand for something!
I mean really stand for something. In school, you have been taught to protect yourself. You have been taught that there is nothing worth sacrificing for. You have been conditioned to segregate and separate yourself on the basis of traits that don’t matter.
Find something that is so important to you that you would be willing to lose everything for. You don’t have to do this right away, but at some point you will have to do it.
Take your time.
You probably can’t even think of something that important right now, and that is okay. I couldn’t for the longest time either, but once I did, everything changed. Don’t expect all the changes to be positive. Sometimes, when you commit to sacrifice everything, the universe will call your bluff.
Before you do that, take some time to look over your life as it has been so far. Admittedly, there isn’t much to it, but at this point in your life you have everything within you to do the great things that are expected of your generation.
You are your greatest asset.
Unfortunately you are also your greatest liability. You are naturally suspicious of adults. You are afraid of admitting that you need help. You don’t know all of the things you don’t know. Use your time on this planet to figure yourself out. Once you do, change what you want to change and reinforce what you want strengthened.
So, class of 2010, you are going to be released soon to take over the world. Good luck with that! We are all watching to see what you do with this opportunity. I hope you are able to do more than my generation was.