A+ For Living Fearlessly

Is what I would title my Commencement Speech today!

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The one & only Lisa McDonald - LivingFearlesslywithLisa.com

I have extremely fond memories of both my college and university graduation ceremonies, and distinctly can recall the amazing feelings of relief, accomplishment, excitement, which was the energy source for all of us who walked the stage so proudly to accept our degrees and diplomas! It was such a surreal moment for myself, personally, that I admittedly do not recollect the specifics of each of the delivered commencement speeches, however, I do remember feeling exceptionally inspired, and believing the speeches to have been meaningfully profound!

Fast forward in my own life to only two years ago, as a proud member of the college alumni, and having been a peer-mentor to the then…soon to be graduating Mohawk College students – I had graciously been approached to deliver my own convocation speech to the up and coming graduates. These students who were soon to be sitting in the same seats I had once upon a time sat in when it was me experiencing that awesome milestone in life! The tables had turned and now it was my honour, privilege and responsibility to be intentional with the crafting of my own messaging to these young adults, whose journey in life were in many respects; just beginning. It was a task I did not take lightly, and certainly, I felt the gravity associated with this shared moment in time. I knew how pivotal the role was in ensuring my message be purpose-driven, and one that I would want to resonate and linger for these students for years to come.

One would think that many drafts would be required so as to arrive at a completed version of a polished speech – one which would serve to encapsulate every possible nugget, and gem of imparted wisdom. I spent many hours pondering what I wanted my precise message to be. When I became exceptionally clear, the speech truly wrote itself. In the initial thought process and contemplation of what I challenged myself to consider before taking pen to paper, I delved very deeply within, and questioned what I would want or need to hear from someone else speaking to me, especially knowing what I now have come to know, and while simultaneously being cognizant of the fact (generically speaking) – ‘We don’t know what we don’t know.’ Outside of being a graduate myself, I have learned so much and have gained a plethora of both personal and professional experience – experiences that many of these graduating students may have yet to experience for themselves. What then would I wish for them to know? What could I share with these individuals, which would leave a lasting impression, and perhaps even impact their lives, mindsets or decision-making? It became clear to me based upon my purpose and passion, that the only real message I could wholeheartedly share with absolute conviction would be on the importance to live fearlessly in ones own life.

Fear as we all know, keeps us immobilized in unearthing potential, growth and development. Fear does not expand us, our dreams, or our passions. Rather, fear (if we let it) holds us hostage; keeping us stuck in backward, non-progressive, or healthy thinking patterns and thought processes. Fear robs people of opportunity, achievement, advancement, fulfillment, and inner calm. Taking risks coupled with massive action while diving off the springboard of life into the unknown can undeniably be nail-biting for most, however, this is when we are our most ALIVE. There is unlocked potential within each and everyone of us. We are not here by accident. We each have much work to do during our time on this planet. There are many people across the globe who would otherwise not stood to have benefited from those who did in fact step into their own greatness and allow their gifts, skills, and talents to have shone through for the rest of us. Literature, art, music, poetry never mind day to day conveniences and commodities such as electricity, modern-day technologies, medicine and too many other gifts to simply cite…none of these would exist or be accessible had people succumbed to their fears. Anything is possible and that truth exists within all of us if we choose to tap into it – harness it – hone it – build it – create it, invent it and in essence…then share it with the masses and the collective.

Stepping into personal leadership is a choice. Becoming the tangible example and/or role model…is a choice. Making ones existence purposeful and meaningful…is a choice. Choosing to shift change, create change, navigate change or become an instrument of change…is a choice. Being conscientiously committed to the legacy one chooses to leave behind…is a choice. Thriving and flourishing as opposed to merely existing and surviving…is a choice. Maximizing ones own potential is not congruent or intuitively aligned with remaining fearful. Fear is a poison which leads to another poison…regret. Life is too precious – too fleeting – too important to drown in both fear and regret.

I want everyone to shine! I want everyone to win! I want everyone to succeed in living fearlessly! My message is for the collective, inclusive of the graduating students I had the honour and the privilege to stand before – two years ago!

Uplifting you to fear less and to live more!

Love & Gratitude ~ Lisa

Originally published at livingfearlesslywithlisa.com

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