The Life of Bon: To the graduating class of 2014: A bit of advice.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

To the graduating class of 2014: A bit of advice.



BYU graduation, 2010

It's graduation season, if you hadn't heard the news.

I heard on the radio this morning that Sandra Bullock gave a graduation speech at a high school in New Orleans this week.  The premise of the speech was this: If you could go back and tell your graduating self something, what would it be?

I really like what good old Sandy said.  Turns out she's got some great advice rolled up her sleeve.  She said:

Stop worrying so much.  We worry over stuff that will never happen and the stuff that does happen we never even thought to worry about.  You never remember any of the moments where you were worrying, so that is time you can never get back.

Nothing's a failure, it's just not supposed to work out that way.  Something better is supposed to work out.

Eat something green every day.

Don't pick your nose in public.

When someone you care about hugs you, hug them back.  With two arms.

If someone doesn't want to play with you, it's okay.  Not everyone is going to love you.  Find someone who does want to play with you and who appreciates what you have to offer

I love Sandra's advice.  I think it's spot on.  If someone asked me the same question, this is what advice I would add...

Put good energy out into the world and it will somehow find its way back to you.

Learn early on how to make good friends of your same gender.  You don't get to keep you group of guy friends after you get married, but girlfriends you can have until the day you die.  One of the most important skills you can develop is how to build and take care of relationships.  This will serve you your entire life.  (I always think it is somewhat troubling/ disturbing when a girl boasts that all of her friends are guys and that she gets along SOOOO much better with guys than girls.)

Don't ditch the important people in your life when you get married.  Remember, a lot of those relationships existed long before you even knew your spouse was alive.

Asking questions makes you appear smarter, not dumber.

Be happy for other people's successes and you'll have more success of your own.

The world doesn't owe you anything.  Stop expecting "payment" and you'll stop being disappointed.  Treat everything as a "bonus".  It makes you a much more grateful person.  (When I complained in high school that everyone else got to drive a car to school but me, my dad would always say, "Driving a car is a privilege, not a right."  I hated that saying at the time, but now I love it.  I think that same attitude should carry over into almost every facet of our lives.)

Give people the benefit of the doubt.

Make a serious effort to call people back, email people back, and text people back.  It's just polite.

What would you add to the list?  I'm so interested to hear your comments.  What is the best advice you have been given/ tried to live by/ one thing you wish you knew when you were graduating?

34 comments:

  1. The year I left High School (1999) that Baz Luhrmann song was EVERYWHERE! It was played in our leaving assembly and I still like these lines from it... "You’re not as fat as you imagine... Don’t worry about the future... Sing... Floss... Remember the compliments you receive, forget the insults... Dance…even if you have nowhere to do it but in your own living room. Read the directions, even if you don’t follow them. Do NOT read beauty magazines, they will only make you feel ugly. Get to know your parents, you never know when they’ll be gone for good. Be nice to your siblings... Travel... Respect your elders... But trust me on the sunscreen…"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think I've ever even heard that song! I love the advice in it. It's awesome!

      Delete
    2. I had my students (first semester college students) summarize this speech (Luhrmann's song was originally a speech by Mary Schmich in the Chicago Tribune: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/columnists/chi-schmich-sunscreen-column,0,4054576.column). Even after a few months out of HS, most could say a lot of the points apply!

      Delete
  2. figure out what makes you happy - and do it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies

    1. How To Stop A Divorce And Save Your Marriage?(Dr.Brave).

      Hello to every one out here, am here to share the unexpected miracle that happened to me three days ago, My name is Jeffrey Dowling,i live in TEXAS,USA.and I`m happily married to a lovely and caring wife,with two kids A very big problem occurred in my family seven months ago,between me and my wife so terrible that she took the case to court for a divorce she said that she never wanted to stay with me again,and that she did not love me anymore So she packed out of my house and made me and my children passed through severe pain. I tried all my possible means to get her back,after much begging,but all to no avail and she confirmed it that she has made her decision,and she never wanted to see me again. So on one evening,as i was coming back from work,i met an old friend of mine who asked of my wife So i explained every thing to her,so she told me that the only way i can get my wife back,is to visit a spell caster,because it has really worked for her too So i never believed in spell,but i had no other choice,than to follow her advice. Then she gave me the email address of the spell caster whom she visited.(bravespellcaster@gmail.com}, So the next morning,i sent a mail to the address she gave to me,and the spell caster assured me that i will get my wife back the next day what an amazing statement!! I never believed,so he spoke with me,and told me everything that i need to do. Then the next morning, So surprisingly, my wife who did not call me for the past seven {7}months,gave me a call to inform me that she was coming back So Amazing!! So that was how she came back that same day,with lots of love and joy,and she apologized for her mistake,and for the pain she caused me and my children. Then from that day,our relationship was now stronger than how it were before,by the help of a spell caster . So, i will advice you out there to kindly email this wonderful man {bravespellcaster@gmail.com},i f you are in any condition like this,or you have any problem related to "bringing your ex back. So thanks to Dr Brave for bringing back my wife,and brought great joy to my family once again.{bravespellcaster@gmail.com}, Thanks..

      Delete
  3. So funny because I wrote an entire blog post yesterday about what I'd tell my 15 year old self! I think my biggest piece of advice would be to stop trying to control everything. I wanted to control my feelings, others' feelings, every step in my life, every situation...and the reality is that it's not possible! And even if it were, it's too stressful!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We're on the same wave length! Yes, giving up the control is huge. The question now is HOW do you do that?! :)

      Delete
  4. I don't think it's fair that you have to ditch your entire group of guy friends the day you get married? I'm not married yet, but I've been with my boyfriend for a very long time. If he would ask me to get rid of my male friends that I have known for more than 15 years, I would kick his ass. I would understand that he would not like it if I started making a lot of new male friends, so I don't do that. But I would never break the bond that I have with the guy friends that I already have. And I have a lot of female friends too, that's not the point. Sometimes you just need a male perspective to balance things out.

    Other than that: I would tell my 15 year old self to enjoy this time with little to no responsibilities to the fullest. And to NEVER go on a diet. I was perfect the way I was when I was 15, but started to diet a couple years later because I gained a couple of pounds. And then the yo-yo-effect kicked in, and now, more than 10 years later, I would give anything to go back to the weight I was when I was 18.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Interesting comment for sure. I don't think you have to ditch your whole group of guy friends either, but for me a male-female friendship is always going to feel a little bit different than a female-female friendship. I see my best friend multiple times a week- we get dinner together, play tennis together, watch Bachelor or just hang out at each other's homes. For me it would be uncomfortable if this person was a guy and I was spending hours and hours of time with just him in his home when I am married. I also don't think it's fair to my husband. I know if he was "hanging out" with a friend who was a girl several times a week and just chilling at her home or going out to dinner with her I would definitely have a problem with it. To each their own, for sure, and maybe I was being a bit assuming when I said that you can't keep your guy friends, it's just for me most married people I know don't have best friends who are the opposite gender.

      Delete
  5. New follower, just read your post on Venus Trapped in Mars :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So glad to have you along!

      Delete
  6. The best piece of advice I've been given/now live by/ would tell my graduating self: Stop trying to please everyone, it's never going to happen, so just quit it. Do what makes you happy and keeps you sane. No one else has to live your life but you! Listen to other's advice, sure, but make the decisions based on your life and what's best for you and your family. You're going to constantly be let down and frustrated if you keep trying to everyone.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amen! And I would add that if someone's life is a huge mess, you don't have to listen to a word of advice they dole out!

      Delete
  7. Kinda want to print this out and put it everywhere I look. Maybe have it tattooed on the inside of my eyelids. but that's gruesome and pointless because it's so dark when i close my eyes anyway.

    Another great post, Bon - thanks for this. Definitely needed in this stage of the year when everything is RUSHRUSHRUSH and OMGIM DOING EVERYTHING WRONG. Definitely helpful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Christine! I thought Sandra Bullock was right on when she said we end up worrying about things that never happen anyway... life has a way of working itself out.

      Delete
  8. I (accidentally) stole a 1,001 life rules for the new adult book from a friend of a roommate and two things stick out to me five (FIVE!!!!) years later:

    1. There may be a period of your life where you have to take public transportation. This is a better alternative to taking out a loan for a car you can't afford.

    2. Use your kitchen. It's there for a reason and it will save you so much money.

    I crashed my car almost two years ago and now I take the bus. I will buy a car again eventually, but for now I'm fine taking the bus places. I keep my independence and I don't have to have a car. (And I don't have to drive! I had severe PTSD after my accident and I don't think I would have been a safe driver for about a year after my crash.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jennis that book sounds amazing. I love the advice about public transportation! I have definitely had my share of public transportation and I used to hate it- I thought it was embarrassing to tell people I took the bus. But YES on the better alternative to taking out a loan you can't afford. For me it's all about living within your means.

      Delete
  9. These are all great tips, and so true! Came across your blog and love it! Happy Thursday :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Happy to have you!

      Delete
  10. I love this! I would add to learn to cook. It saves you SO much money and can be a ton of fun once you're married.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes! A cooking class is much cheaper than eating out every night!

      Delete
  11. I totally think your list is spot-on, except for the part about not getting to keep your guy friends after you get married. I think that if my husband had asked/told me to get rid of them, we wouldn't be married. I was never friends with ONLY guys, but I'm the "best man" in my best guy friend's wedding this August and I wouldn't trade him for the world! I still go out with two of my guy friends for dinner or drinks or whatever, and Ken knows and doesn't care. I guess to each their own, but I just think that a carte blanche statement like that isn't true or fair or in all situations.

    That being said, I loved the bit about "The world doesn't owe you anything." That needs to be given to people on a card the day they are born.

    I would add, "Learn to cook, know how to change a tire but always have roadside assistance, know at least 3 clean jokes, always keep an eye on your purse, ask for directions, get a flu shot, see the doctor regularly, get your teeth cleaned twice a year, and call your parents. And wear sunscreen EVERY DAY."

    :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alison great comment! Your comment along with the comment from voskosmos above about friends of the opposite gender have definitely given me a lot to think about. You may have even inspired a future post!

      YES on the learning how to change a tire. That's a big one and one I still haven't mastered yet!

      Delete
  12. Love these posts. What I wish I knew when I was graduating...

    Arrive on time, if you're late to an engagement of some sort you're being rude to the host or person you're meeting. Organize your life so that you can organize your job and responsibilities outside of the home - organization is KEY.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I really needed to read that top one on worry. If worrying was an Olympic sport I would be a Gold medalist. But what a waste of time (and shows my lack of faith).

    I wrote a similar post to my college self a month ago and I said: Your love of rap music is not a phase. HA. I also second the skill of keeping positive relationships. So very important. Great post!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I love it! So much great advice :)

    ReplyDelete
  15. The only thing I would tell myself is don't cut your hair! But then again, I love looking back on my pixie phase even if the growing out period lasted two years and was awkward as heck.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Don't take out that student loan. Work through college and pay your own way. Also, don't buy a brand new car when you're in a rush because your last one got totaled - take your time to find a good, solid, used car. Avoid credit cards. And learn to save money sooner rather than later. That compound interest is amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Great post!

    I remember some advice my stepfather gave me when he came to the business world: he told me that when you're in a roomful of people who've uncovered a problem, and everyone's talking about who's to blame, just go ahead and accept the blame. Even if it had nothing to do with you, tell everybody was your fault, and you'll learn from your mistakes, and then be the first person to start talking about ways to remedy the issue. In the end, the real culprit for the problem will come out, but when you're trying to get things done, nobody can get past the blame game. If you take responsibility, everyone feels the weight lifted off their shoulders, and then they'll be willing to talk about a solution. And the person who started THAT conversation will be remembered.

    I have found in my 25 years in the working world that his philosophy has held up.

    ReplyDelete
  18. I'm leaving school in the next few weeks to start college in autumn, we don't really graduate until after university but if I was graduating I would definitely agree with the nose picking one! ;)

    ReplyDelete
  19. Being a young girl in college this is such a great perspective to think and does give me great insight. Heck, this whole blog you have always seems to give me the right insight when I need it.
    Thanks Bonnie!

    ReplyDelete
  20. I think I would say don't waste time worrying about what others did to you. I find myself constantly replaying bad events that happened over and over and all that does is make me angrier. My mom told me once, do you think that person thinks about you as much you think about them? Usually the answer is NO! It's helped me a lot!

    ReplyDelete
  21. I love this advice and agree with all of it! Also, that must be your sister and mom -- you all look so much alike! Adorbs.

    To respond to the item about male friends (and to the comments above) I don't think that anyone really "ditches" their male friends but it's pretty normal for them to fall off the radar once you settle down with someone. I'm not yet married to my boyfriend but once we got serious, most of my guy friends didn't talk to me as much. I think it's out of respect (or maybe some of them secretly liked me -- I don't know). I do have one male friend that I consider my brother but he lives in another state now. We say "I love you" to each other but my boyfriend doesn't care because he knows our history. He's more like family than a friend. I don't have any other male friends like that and it would just be weird if I did!

    ReplyDelete