My Monday must-read this week is tied into the graduation season that is quickly passing by.
Randy Pausch knew he was fighting a losing battle with cancer when he gave his “last lecture” at Carnegie Mellon University. The theme was really achieving your childhood dreams, but it has come to be known simply as the last lecture, which is how the book of the lecture was titled.
I remember watching this lecture shortly before I left for college. The biggest takeaway I had was a metaphor Pausch used: you can either be a Tigger or Eeyore in life.
Remember those characters from Winnie-the-Pooh? Tigger is full of energy, bouncing around and totally excited about every little thing. Eeyore, on the other hand, is depressed and sees the dark side of even the brightest situations.
Pausch’s philosophy was that you could be excited about life or not, but that decision would propel you to your purpose. If you’re optimistic, you can really accomplish whatever you want to.
Here’s a man who has every reason in the world to be depressed. He had two young children who he was going to be literally leaving behind, along with a wife he loved dearly. And he’s talking about really living.
If you can’t enjoy living while you have the opportunity, what’s the point?
I think this is a great book to read as you’re before you head off to college or into the real world. It’s a good reminder of everything we have to look forward to in life.