Thursday, June 19, 2014

Michael Josephson: The Commencement curse

  Millions of teenagers across the land are about to leave the womb of high school for a world full of new freedoms and responsibilities. Although many have been waiting for this event for a long time, eager to get on with their lives as liberated adults, the thought of leaving behind friends and familiar places can be scary.

  The transition isn’t made any easier by well-meaning adults who deliver what I call the Commencement Curse: “These are the best days of your life.” It’s a curse because, if it’s true, we’re telling kids it’s all downhill from here!

  Fortunately, it’s not true. Yes, teenage years include wonderful memories of special friendships and all kinds of firsts. But not all memories are good, and however good they were, they’re not likely to be the best — not even close! In fact, the best is yet to come.

  You will keep old friends as long as you have things in common, but you’re sure to make new ones as well. Yes, you’ll face additional challenges and responsibilities, but you’ll gain far greater control over your life to do what you want to do and be who you want to be.

  Most of all, if you look in the right places, you’ll discover mature, meaningful love and trusting relationships that provide unbounded fulfillment. And if you wait until you can truly appreciate the comfort of marriage and unequaled joys raising a family, there will be endless moments of profound pride and satisfaction that make your school years seem like kid stuff.

  About the author: Michael Josephson is one of the nation’s most sought-after and quoted ethicists. Founder and president of Josephson Institute and its CHARACTER COUNTS! project, he has conducted programs for more than 100,000 leaders in government, business, education, sports, law enforcement, journalism, law, and the military. Mr. Josephson is also an award-winning radio commentator.

  This article was published by the Josephson Institute.

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