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Capitol Hill Update from State Representative David Byrd: Message to 2020 Graduates

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   This is an email that I received, and I thought it would be great for our 2020 graduates! It is written by Jon Gordon.

   Dear Graduate,

   This virus may have stolen your senior year and graduation, but it cannot and will not steal your future. While you will always remember this painful time, you’ll also be the generation that doesn’t take anything for granted. You know what it’s like to have something taken away from you in a moment and as a result you will appreciate what you have when you have it. You’ll value your relationships, make the most of your opportunities and create a great future. I know it’s easy to be bitter about what happened but choose to get better. Don’t look backwards. Look forward. Stay positive. Work hard. Believe the best is yet to come. What you believe will determine what you create. In this spirit here are 11 lessons that may inspire you on your journey.

   1. You are here for a reason and the most important thing you can do in life is to find, live and share your purpose. It’s the one thing in life that truly matters and if you don’t pursue it, everything else is meaningless.

   2. Follow your passion. It so often leads you to your purpose. You may not know what your passion is right now. That’s ok. The important thing is to make it your life mission to find it, live it and share it. To help find your passion, seek out jobs and experiences that allow you to use your strengths and talents.

   3. Beware of hobbies. Just because you love to cook doesn’t mean you would enjoy owning a restaurant. For example, I owned restaurants but I realized I didn’t love the food business. I loved the service and marketing aspect of the business.

   4. Quit for the right reasons. Don’t quit because work is hard or you’re experiencing challenges. Quit because in your heart you know there is something else for you to do. Quit because you are not benefiting yourself or the organization you work for. Quit because you are absolutely certain you are no longer supposed to be there.

   5. Learn from every job and experience. Every job, good or bad, prepares you for the work you were ultimately born to do.

   6. Your job may not be your ultimate purpose but it can serve as a vehicle to live and share your purpose.

   7. Whatever job(s) you take after graduation simply decide to serve. When you serve in small ways, you’ll get more opportunities to serve in bigger ways.

   8. Your dream job is likely not the one you dreamed about. So often we end up in amazing careers that have nothing to do with our college degree or childhood dreams.

   9. The quest for your purpose is not a straight line. It is filled with mystery, signs, obstacles, victories, dead ends, delays and detours. Your job is to stay optimistic and faithful on your quest.

   10. Don’t rush the future. There is a process that seeds must go through in order to become all they are destined to become, and you must go through this same process to become the person you are meant to be and do the work you are meant to do. You may want things to happen NOW but more than likely if you got what you wanted NOW you wouldn’t be ready for it. The purpose process prepares you, strengthens you, shapes you and grows you to be successful, not in your time, but in the right time.

   11. Be the Seed. Seeds surrender themselves to the ground so they can be used for a greater purpose. Wherever you work, decide to plant yourself where you are and allow yourself to be used for a greater purpose. When you plant yourself and make a difference you grow into the person you were born to be and produce a harvest that will benefit others and change the world.

   As always, I am truly humbled and honored to be your voice on Capitol Hill. If there is ever any issue I can assist with, please reach out to my office by calling 615-741-2190 or emailing me at [email protected]. I look forward to hearing your thoughts, ideas, concerns, and suggestions during the second half of the 111th General Assembly.

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