Right now there are thousands of students in the middle of the HSC (including my daughter) consumed by hours of study, stress and the nagging doubt that no matter what marks they get it won’t be enough! All those years of study leading up to this one moment and no matter how hard you try to keep it in perspective there is still this sense of potential disaster and it can feel like your impending doom if you don’t get a great mark because your entry into University hangs on this.
Now as a parent or teacher or friend you want to emphasise the benefits of study and diligence and the great value good marks will bring but keeping it in perspective can be tough. Let’s face it this is simply one set of exams in a life where you will sit many many more however it does seem to take on a disproportionate sense of importance.
As it happens I was given cause to take a look at the incredible speech given by Steve Jobs for his 2005 Stanford Commencement Address.
If you haven’t seen it before (or even if you have) it is compelling viewing and you can watch it here. This is a speech given by one of the most successful, creative and powerful men we have seen in recent times and he didn’t graduate from College. In fact it is because he dropped out that he achieved some of the most amazing things.
There are some things in this speech that particularly resonate with me.
“you can’t connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect them looking backwards so you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future”
This is very true of my life and I am sure for many others. If you don’t get the best mark in the HSC and therefore don’t get into your lifelong dream course don’t stress over it too much.
He goes on to say:
“you have to trust in something. Your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever because believing that the dots will connect somewhere down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart even when it leads you off the well worn path and that will make all the difference”
Now I am not saying don’t study or try to do your best in the HSC or any other set of exams you face in life (if my daughter is reading this that definitely applies to you – get back to your study!) but try to keep it in perspective. My life has taken me on many different paths and I am sure yours will to.
So good luck to all of you but just remember you have to believe and wait to connect the dots looking back.
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/seanmolin/6216286316/”>Sean Molin Photography</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>cc</a>
Categories: What a world