This week’s blog post is dedicated to the memory of Steve Jobs. Brilliant businessman, innovator, Apple inventor, and popular Pixar pioneer, Steve Jobs’ outlook and ideas will be dearly missed on this planet. His genius brought unique vision to the marketplace.
After receiving the news that Steve Jobs had passed away, I received an email from my mom with a link to an article titled “You’ve Got to Find What You Love.” It is the commencement address Jobs gave in 2005 at Stanford University.
In his speech Jobs teased, “This is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation.” He was a college drop out. Jobs emphasized the importance of his dropping out, which gave him the time to “drop-in” to the classes that most interested him. He stopped pursuing a traditional track to obtain credits and instead focused on what inspired him most. A good lesson for us all to learn is to follow our curiosity and passion; it will successfully lead us where we’re meant to be.
Jobs also made a habit of keeping mortality in the forefront of his mind, to keep himself on track with his most important values. Jobs recalled a quote he heard in his youth, “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” Jobs continued, “I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today? And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.”
This is a simple and important practice for all of us to adopt. Look yourself in the mirror on a daily basis and ask yourself if you are doing the things with your life that are most important to you. If so, bravo, continue on. If not, stop. What do you need to change? What can you let go of? What do you need to do more of? Make a commitment to dedicate your life to what lights you up, inspires you, and positively affects the world. Small or big, your choices matter.
Jobs concluded his speech by encouraging graduates to “Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.” Jobs identified this admonition in his early years and implemented it in his approach to life. It’s obvious that we are at a time in history where we the people are ”hungry;” hungry for truth, hungry for justice, and hungry for equality. What are you hungry for? What changes do you want to see in the world around you? Let your hunger drive you to appropriate action.
Jobs reference to foolishness isn’t about doing stupid things, though we all may do stupid things from time-to-time. Rather, “Stay Foolish” implies wear the cap of the fool, as symbolized in the tarot. The Fool travels he knows not where. “So filled with visions, questions, wonder and excitement is he, that he doesn’t see the cliff he is likely to fall over.” Being overly optimistic and naïve have their downside. However, allowing oneself to just go out and enjoy the world, to see what there is to see, is important.
For more Steve Jobs inspiration I recommend reading his entire commencement speech. http://news.stanford.edu/news/2005/june15/jobs-061505.html
Thanks Steve for being a true model of success and helping us all keep focus on what’s most important in our lives. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. That we will.