10.05.2011

don't settle

I am so sad to learn that we have lost such an inspiring person today. While watching the news I saw a clip from a speech that he gave at the 2005 Stanford commencement ceremony that really struck me. For the past few months I've felt very unsure of what I want to do in the future, and I've been trying to get it all figured out. It's definitely what I needed to hear right now. 


…You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards, so you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something  your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever, because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart even when it leads you off the well worn path, and that will make all of the difference…

…Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don't lose faith. I'm convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You've got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don't settle…

…Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure - these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart…

…Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary…


If you're interested, here is the full speech. Very touching.

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