“Think hard about who you marry. It’s the most important decision you will ever make. Devote yourself to your kids. Nothing else is guaranteed to make you happy”

This advice was taken from a graduation speech by David Brooks, journalist from the NY Times to the at Rice University graduation class …

“Over the years, we all pick up good advice. Spend a year abroad. It’s bound to change your life. Think hard about who you marry. It’s the most important decision you will ever make. Devote yourself to your kids. Nothing else is guaranteed to make you happy. The only thing I’d add is, create a posse of dead people. Create an entourage of heroes. Put their pictures on your wall, and keep them in your mind.

They will remind you of your place in the hidden river of wisdom. They’ll serve as models. They’ll give you an honest perspective on how you’re doing. They’ll remind you that your blessings don’t come from you but from those who came before you.”

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Live off your parents as long as possible.

Guy Kawasaki is a Silicon Valley venture capitalist. He was one of the Apple employees originally responsible for marketing the Macintosh in 1984. Guy’s advice …

“Remember these ten things: if just one of them helps you, this speech will have been a success:

10. Live off your parents as long as possible.
9. Pursue joy, not happiness.
8. Challenge the known and embrace the unknown.
7. Learn to speak a foreign language, play a musical instrument, and play non-contact sports.
6. Continue to learn.
5. Learn to like yourself or change yourself until you can like yourself.
4. Don’t get married too soon.
3. Play to win and win to play.
2. Obey the absolutes.
1. Enjoy your family and friends before they are gone.”

Link to speech Guy has given six times at commencements, graduations and baccalaureates.

“Why Quitting Is Sometimes the Right Thing to Do”

From an article titled The Lost Art of Quitting …

We’ve been taught that quitting means failure.  But we neglect to add the very important caveat to that statement, which is that there are two types of quitting:  Quitting things that matter, and quitting things that don’t.  Because we’ve had it so drilled into our minds that quitting is bad, we don’t tend to make that distinction, and instead, don’t quit anything.  We persevere through the things that matter, as well as the things that don’t.  And we use a hell of a lot of energy in the process, all in the name of fear of failure.  After all, we wouldn’t want to be a quitter, would we?  It’s almost like being called a vulgar profanity.

We persevere to save face.  We persevere to avoid looking like a failure.  We persevere to prove ourselves to others.  We persevere so we don’t feel like all the time we spent up until that point was a waste.

And all of those reasons are bullshit reasons that are centered around pride.

The only reason we should ever persevere is when it matters.  And when does it matter?  When it contributes to your big picture goals.  Anything else is a waste of your time, and not quitting is extremely counterproductive.  In that case, quitting is the most intelligent move you could make.  It’s acknowledging that–hey–I can’t do everything.