Some people have asked to read the commencement address I delivered this morning to the 2013 graduates of Butler University. So here it is.
My own commencement speaker, who shall remain nameless, began with a lame joke about how these speeches only come in two varieties: Short and bad. This…
Step 1. Take the situation and play it over and over in your mind. Then stop. That won’t help. It will fill you with a zealotry that you were correct, and so, by default, the other person was wrong.
Step 2. Play the argument from their side. Understand what the other person was trying to tell you. Not just the words they say, but how they say it and what they left unsaid. Listen for an emotion, an intention and plotline that was previously undetected.
Step 3. Remember that you were both at fault. An argument is rarely one-sided. Recognise that their words have some truth. This but is hard.
Step 4. Admit it to yourself, without a ‘but’ or an excuse, what you did wrong. That’s going to sting. Most people like to live in a childish cloud, a delusion, that they are always right and everyone else is at fault. But not you, not I. Admit that you were wrong.
Step 5. Now, if you’re strong enough, go and tell them that you understand and that you are sorry, but don’t expect them to take it. They will probably take this as validation that you are the only one in the wrong. They may even tell you ‘I didn’t do anything wrong’. That’s ok. Don’t try and convince them, save your breath. If they are younger or inexperienced excuse them in your mind.
Step 6. Forgive them as best you can for their failings.
Step 7. And finally, forgive yourself. Know that by recognising and addressing your failures, these do not define you. You are more than your faults. And you are a stronger and bigger person for knowing that.
Step 8. Love yourself anyway.
Cameron Russell admits she won “a genetic lottery”: she’s tall, pretty and an underwear model. In this talk, she takes a wry look at the industry that had her looking highly seductive at barely 16-years-old and acknowledges the racial privileges that helped paved the way for her career.
You can feel the layers of history, elements of Istanbul’s former empires, in this home on the Bosphorus.
From ‘Turkish Delight’, a story on page 194 of Vogue Living Sept/Oct 2010.
Photograph by Richard Powers.
Lifescouts: Music Video Badge
If you have this badge, reblog it and share your story! Look through the notes to read other people’s stories.
Click here to buy this badge physically (ships worldwide).
Lifescouts is a badge-collecting community of people who share their real-world experiences.
I made a music video for my presidential campaign. It took a day to shoot. We started at 9am and by 6pm the video was ready to go live. I loved the whole day. It might not have the most views or be the highest spec but I really enjoyed it. I would recommend everyone give it a go even if it turns out shit…