To the Graduating Class of 2002

It was said in a Chicago Newspaper Article that everyone should try their hand at writing a graduation speech, so here is mine.  Eleven years past due to the class of 2002:

We all have things we regret and we will all have many more, you take chances and risks.  If you open your heart and turn risks into knowledge, they will become manageable lessons instead of regrets.  

Use sincerity in everything you do.

Decisions will have to be made, whether they are good are bad.  My best advice is that you stick to the decisions once you make them. 

Eat strawberry pop-tarts cold. 

Love a whole bunch in your 20’s and do it clumsily.  By your 30’s learn what a secure attachment is and pass that on to your children.  

Accept apologies and apologize.  

Never let money become more important than green and cream paper.  Manage it and don’t let it manage you. 

Let your pride go immediately after it comes. 

Go to the movies by yourself at least once.  Learn how to be alone.  With a movie, with a book, with yourself.  It’s amazing what you learn when all the other chatter is gone. 

Learn something from a stranger. 

Don’t be afraid to wait.  Don’t be in a hurry to marry, have kids, go to college or do what everyone else is doing.  Do it your way and make it right. 

If you have a strong passion for something try making it your career. 

Be with your loved ones as much as you can.  And when they are gone, remember them as much as you can in the little things you do.  

Exercise. 

Observe people rather than judge them.  Leave categories for arbitrary things like plants and food, don’t reduce people to categories. 

Find happiness in the little things. 

Try to find the silver lining in anything you do.  Venting and complaining are not known to help the psyche feel better.  Positive vocabulary leads to a positive attitude. 

Be open-minded.  

You will not always win, you will rarely be the best.  Learn how to take this with grace. 

Don’t let other people’s bad moods or attitudes become yours. 

Be careful what you do in public social media forms, don’t post anything you wouldn’t be comfortable showing your parents, your boss, or your future children.  

Live life with poise and passion and never give up on any of your dreams. 

Your best years will be your 30’s.  

Don’t place too much weight on epiphanies.  

Laugh as much as your can for as long as you can. 

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