Aaron Sorkin, the filmmaker who has made a career out of making movies about glib, fast-talking jerks (Zuckerberg for example), recently gave the commencement address at Syracuse University. and he at last spoke some sense to modern American graduates who go out into an uncertain world. The main points from the commencement address:
1. Make no mistake about it, you are dumb. You're a group of incredibly well-educated dumb people. I was there. We all were there. You're barely functional. There are some screw-ups headed your way. I wish I could tell you that there was a trick to avoiding the screw-ups, but the screw-ups, they're a-coming for ya. It's a combination of life being unpredictable, and you being super dumb.
2. Don't ever forget that you're a citizen of this world, and there are things you can do to lift the human spirit, things that are easy, things that are free, things that you can do every day. Civility, respect, kindness, character. You're too good for schadenfreude, you're too good for gossip and snark, you're too good for intolerance -- and since you're walking into the middle of a presidential election, it's worth mentioning that you're too good to think people who disagree with you are your enemy.
3. You'll meet a lot of people who, to put it simply, don't know what they're talking about.
4. Develop your own compass, and trust it. Take risks, dare to fail, remember the first person through the wall always gets hurt.
5. Don't ever forget that a small group of thoughtful people can change the world. It's the only thing that ever has.
If you liked this, please check out The Success Manual - 600+ pages of compiled wisdom on 125 important traits, skills and activities.