A letter to you, the graduates of 2018,
Congratulations. This is momentous, it really is and no matter what happened yesterday or what will happen tomorrow, nobody can take this away. Today, this day, it’s yours.
You may already have some idea as to how your life will turn out, at least the expectations made aware to you. The truth is, those aren’t truths at all, you don’t have to be anything by a certain day, age or time in your life. Don’t lose yourself for the cost of belonging, it is a high price to pay. Instead, dedicate your life to passion and authenticity. In between goals and accolades, there is a thing called life, and you really can be in charge of it.
The world is more abundant than you can imagine, you need to envision the world through possibility and positivity. At the heart of this, there is passion. Passion is the ultimate bliss, if you haven’t found your gift then you just haven’t realised it yet. Why? Because everyone has a burning fuel inside them, a talent which is already there. There is something, it can be anything that you would never give up, that you would do for no money at all and when you are struggling for time. That is your passion and it is absolutely crucial that you follow it, it is your energy, it will fill you up and make you feel alive. Don’t settle for mediocre passions, or the comforting feeling of conformity. Live according to your own rules. You are the designer of your destiny.
Ambition isn’t a dirty word. As graduates, you have spent the last several years trying to not fail. Perfectionism is a trap, it won’t push you or challenge you. The desire to be “perfect” is actually the easy option, it is a cop-out. Those who predict you will fail are naysayers, and they are the real failures because they are living in a world of “safe”. You are going to have to fail ten times to succeed on the 11th. If you never fail, you will never appreciate success, whether that be at work, in your community or in a relationship. A mark of a champion is shaking off the mud that keeps trying to bury your dream.
Be authentically you
You do not need to be “fixed”. Graduates, you are worthy, just as you are. There will be voices, or more white noise. The white noise can come in many different forms, even as you get older. People will tell you that one person can’t make a difference. As girls, you will be told to fit into a box. That box will come with a label and you will be tempted to let that label define you. You though can’t be defined by anything other than the brilliance in your mind, and the goodness in your heart. Show up for yourself and invest in yourself. You will not feel amazing everyday, but you can make a choice to be as authentically you as can be. In that, you will find your purpose, your passion and your joy.
Be a permanent giver
We all talk about being kind, giving back. A lot of us though think that this just means giving to charity. Donating and fundraising are fantastic ways to give back but there are dozens of others too. Helping someone, smiling, having integrity and doing the right thing are all simple ways we can achieve greatness daily. You can be a bystander, or you can be a change agent. You get to decide. The most untapped resource in our world, is girls. Changing the world and giving starts with the smallest task everyday, the first step. Graduates, do not give to receive, but by giving you will get back. Inspiration, motivation and encouragement to keep forging that path, one sprinkled with kindness and compassion. We already have too many hard hearts, be soft. Just with a badass mind.
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Author: Scarlett Victoria Clark
Scarlett Victoria Clark is Founder and Editor of SMART GIRL TRIBE and a multi-lingual journalist. She has also written for Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar, Women’s Health. When not writing she enjoys travelling and shopping for (more) heels.