"Action is the foundational key to all success." - Pablo Picasso
In honor of our recent graduates this Spring semester, I would like to take some time to discuss the meaning of "success" through my eyes. Of course there are a lot of different ways to view the amount of success a person may have, how much money they earn, how popular they are, what position of power they hold, or maybe how many games of Jenga they have won, but primarily I feel as though it is a state of mind.
Working at a college, I have the opportunity to be one of the primary judicial hearing officers for students who may have made the wrong decision breaking an institutional policy, risking their personal well-being, or even breaking the law. Throughout the course of my experience in this position or similar positions, I have seen hundreds of these meetings. Many of these meetings follow a pretty standard flow where we discuss the incident, consider alternative options, talk about the consequences and sanctions and move on from there. Before the official meeting even begins, however, I try to take some stress off the situation and get to know the student on a personal level, what they are studying, what they wish to do with these studies, what their passions and dreams are, etc. During this brief moment, the majority of students almost completely forget why they are there and show their passions and excitement for their future. Later in the meeting, I try to bring back up these passions and we discuss how their actions may have swayed them from their desired road. Maybe it is the optimistic spirit inside of me, but I feel like they leave their meeting thinking about their actions, considering their course of action, and many times, I won't see them for a judicial meeting for the remainder of their time at the institution.
The point that I'm trying to get at is that the concept of success stems from the understanding of where you want to go in the first place. It's important to stop from time to time and reflect on your passions and dreams. What are your pulling forces, what can are you excited about even after a long day, what gives your life purpose? If you keep a sticky note in the back of your mind as a reminder of where you are heading, sometimes you think twice before potentially comprising your chances of getting there. Sometimes a judicial meeting is all that you need to serve as a reminder and wake-up call of your passions. You always have a chance to reach your goals. As long as you take action and direct yourself toward your goal, there is no stopping you. Success is only a step away, it comes down to you to decide which direction to step.
Congratulations to the Class of 2016, taking that step across the stage is a step toward your success!
Question time: What are your hopes and dreams?