It’s time to see how well you know your favourite luminaries. Match these 13 quotes that have been snipped out of various powerful commencement speeches over the years. Write your guesses in the comment section below. No cheating! The first person to get all 13 right wins a free trip to Stanford’s Class of 2016 commencement ceremony.*
A – David Foster Wallace – Kenyon College
B – Bono – University of Pennsylvania
C – Oprah Winfrey – Standford University
D – Dwight Eisenhower – Pennsylvania State University
E – Jay Leno – Emerson College
F – Arianna Huffington – Vassar College
G – Jim Carey – Maharishi University of Management
H – Sheryl Sandberg – Harvard University
I – Barack Obama – Morehouse College
J – Jeff Bezos – Princeton University
K – Denzel Washington – Dillard University
L – Jerry Yang – University of Hawaii
M – Ellen Degeneres – Tulane University
Follow Your passion, stay true to yourself, never follow someone else’s path. Unless you’re in the woods and you’re lost and you see a path, then all means, you should follow that.
When you’re supposed to do something or not supposed to do something, your emotional guidance system lets you know. The trick is to learn to check your ego at the door and start checking your gut instead.
Fail big: “Don’t be afraid to fail big, to dream big, but remember, dreams without goals are just dreams. And they ultimately fuel disappointment.
I try to give myself a goal every day, sometimes it’s just not to curse somebody out.
So many of us choose our path out of fear designed as practicality. You can fail at what you don’t want, so you might as well take a chance on doing what you love.
We can’t fix every problem- corruption, natural calamities are part of the picture here…. But the ones we can, we must.
If you can’t get through the front door, go through the back door. For years I couldn’t get The Tonight Show, I auditioned and auditioned but I never got it. You know why? Because I wasn’t good enough.[…] So I did every second-rate cable bad talk show I could get my hands on till I was good enough. Keep trying.
I didn’t think I’d regret trying and failing. And I suspected I would always be haunted by a decision to not try at all. After much consideration, I took the less safe path to follow my passion, and I’m proud of that choice.[…] In the end, we are our choices. Build yourself a great story.
The really important kind of freedom involves attention, and awareness, and discipline, and effort, and being able to truly care about other people and to sacrifice for them, over and over, in myriad petty little unsexy ways, every day.
The most successful CEO’s I know didn’t start out intending on making money – rather, they had a vision of how their product or service would change things, and the money followed.
I urge you to build boundaries, introduce digital detoxes into your life, and learn to regularly disconnect from the jumble and the cacophony and make time to reconnect with yourself. There will be many profound and fulfilling relationships ahead of you, but the relationship with yourself is the most important relationship you’ll ever have.
If we are to have partner for peace, the we must first be partners in sympathetic recognition that all mankind possesses in common like aspirations and hungers, like ideals and appetites, like purposes and frailties, a like demand for economic advancement. The divisions between us are artificial and transient. Our common humanity is God-made and enduring.
There is no straight path from your seat today to where you are going. Don’t try to draw that line. You will not just get it wrong, you’ll miss big opportunities. And I mean big – like the internet.
Careers are not ladders, those days are long gone, but jungle gyms. Don’t just move up and down, don’t just look up, look backwards, sideways, around corners.
It’s a long life, you don’t need to rush to be or do something. Your job is to walk out into the unknown and see what happens. Take your time, learn and enjoy something from each job, layer it on, and then pass it along so others can benefit from your wisdom.
*Totally kidding about the free trip to Stanford’s Class of 2016 commencement ceremony. What you really win is my admiration and a potential air high-five!