Love What You Do….Do What You Love

A couple of weeks ago, I had a parent meeting with a fabulous person to discuss her young adult’s future. We reviewed several colleges and set a plan for the application process. After business was over, we sat and chatted about life, philosophies, our life history and much that makes us who we are. It was heartwarming.

While I was walking her out of the office, she told me about a video and thought I should share it on this blog. Today, as I sat in my my parked car checking tweets, I saw the #iSad hashtag about Steve Jobs. It made me sad to think about the end of an incredible life that changed the world as we know it. I sat and wondered how many more phenomenal people are out there, walking in the this man’s footsteps or creating new ones in the world.

Watch and listen.

Steve Jobs had three themes and three stories in the speech, connect the dots (even if they don’t make sense right now, they will in retrospect), love what you do, live as though today is the last day of your life. When he presented these wise words, he hoped he’d be living several more decades, not only a few years. But with the wake up call, he was able to get his affairs in order, and live his life.

Steve Jobs dropped out of college because he did not see the value in his education; in spending his family savings on a college education because he wasn’t sold after six months. Students, what is the value of your education? What is it worth to you? Why do you want to go to college? Is it because you want to do something that you love? Is it because your parents want you to go to college at whatever expense? Arriving at the “right” decision to attend post-secondary education has got to be the most adult decision a young person must make at that age; the decision to attend college is not to be taken lightly.

But, if the decision means that college is not in the cards at this point in your life, maybe it’s not meant to be. Jobs says do what you love and live your own life. It will make sense and the dots will connect, if you have the confidence to live your own life.

Students and parents, a young adult’s desire to attend college is an important one, let the student have a voice in the process and decision making. They will thank you for it later, because they will connect the dots looking backward.

The last thing I want to comment on can be discussed at every age, whether it be deciding on majors or on choosing a profession. Jobs (and many others) says to do what you believe is great work, “if you haven’t found it yet, then keep looking and don’t settle.” Even at this point in my life, this is something I must remember. Am I doing my best work? Is this work something that I love or have I settled? Is this truly what I want to do with my life? Rhetorical questions, but oh so appropriate.
Adults and teenagers alike can sit and reflect on what “best work” means, whether it be the essay that is due in class or a project/assignment due to our superiors at work. Even those that work for themselves have to constantly remember to produce the best product or offer the best service that they can possibly offer.
Look at everything as a beginner, be creative, love what you do, do your best work.
Thank you Stanford for having this phenomenal human being share his words of wisdom to the experts and professionals of the future.
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