Motivational speech of Denzel Washington
I found that nothing in life is worthwhile. Unless you take RISK nothing.
Nelson Mandela said:
There is no passion to be found playing small
And settling for a life that’s less than the one
You’re capable of living.
Now I’m sure in your experience in school and applying to college and picking your major and deciding what you want to do with life. I’m sure people have told you to make sure you have something to fall back on but I NEVER understand the concept having something to fall back on. If I’m going to fall, I don’t want to fall back on anything. I don’t want to FALL FORWARD.
I figured at least this way will see what I’m going to hit without CONSISTENCY. You will never finish, so do what you feel passionate about, take chances, and don’t be afraid to fail. There is an old IQ test, there is old IQ test nine dots and you have to draw five with pencil withing these nine dots, without lifting the pencil, the only way to do it was to go outside the box. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box, Don’t be afraid to FAIL BIG, To DREAM BIG but remember dreams without goals are just dreams.
“Raggie Jackson struck out 2600 times in his career the most in the history of baseball but don’t hear about the strikeouts People remember the home runs.” FALL FORWARD.
“Thomas Edison conducted 1000 failed experiments because 1001st was the light ball.” FALL FORWARD. Every failed experiment is one step closer to success. You’ve got to take RISK and I’m sure you probably heard that before but I want to talk to you about why that’s so important. You will FAIL at some point in your life accept it, you will lose, you will embarrass yourself. You will suck, at something there is no doubt about it and I know that’s probably not a traditional message for a graduation ceremony. I’m telling you, embarrass you because its inevitable. In the acting business, you fail all the time early on in my career. I auditioned for a part in a broadway musical perfect role for me I thought to accept of the fact that I can’t sing. I didn’t get the job but there is the thing I didn’t quit. I didn’t FALL BACK. I walked out of there to prepare for the next audition, and the audition I prayed but I continue to FAIL and FAIL but it didn’t matter you know that there is an old saying. You hang around the barbers shop long enough sooner and later you going to get a haircut, so you will catch a break and I did catch a break. Last year, I did play called fences on broadway but here is kicker, it was at the court theater but I failed that first auditioned 30 years prior. The point is every graduate is here today has the training and the talent to SUCCEED but do you have guts to fail, if you don’t fail you are not even trying. It will say it again if you don’t fail you are even trying to get something you never had. You have to do something you never did and standing around your death bed are the ghosts representing your unfulfilled positional. The ghosts of the ideas you never acted on the ghost of the talent you didn’t use and they are standing around your bed angry, disappointed and upset but they say we came to you because you could have brought us to life and we have to go to the grave together, so ask you today, how many ghosts is going to be around your bed when your time comes.
I just got back from South Africa, It’s a beautiful country but there are places there with terrible poverty and Africa is just the tip of the iceberg. The Middle East needs your help, japan needs your help, Alabama needs your help, Tennessee needs your help, Louisiana needs your help, Philadelphia needs your help, the world needs a lot and we need it from you. We really do, we need it from young people. I mean I’m not speaking for the rest of us up here but I know I’m getting a little grayer. We need it from the young people
Because remember this: You got to get out there, you got to give it everything you have got, whether it’s your time, your talent, prayers, or your treasures. What are you going to do what you have? I’m talking about how much you have. Some of you are business majors, some of you are theologians, nurses, scientists, and sociologists. Some of you have money, some of you have patient, some of you have kindness, some of you have love, some of you have the gift of long-suffering, whatever it is, whatever your gift is.
What are going to do with what you have; now here is my last point about FAILURE. Sometimes, It’s the best way to figure out where you’re going, your life will never be a straight path. I began at university as a pre-med student. I took a course called cardiac morphogenesis, I could not read it, I could not say it. I sure I couldn’t pass it, so then I decided to go in pre-law then journalism and with no academic focus my grades too off in their own direction. I was a 1.8 GPA and the university politely suggested that it might be better to take some time off. I was twenty years old. I was at my lowest point. And the one day, and I remember the exact day march 27th 1975. I was helping my mom in a beauty shop, my mother owned a beauty shop and there was this older woman. I don’t know her personally but I was looking in the mirror and every time I looked through the mirror. I could see her behind me, she was staring at me, she just kept looking at me, every time I looked at her, she kept giving me these strange looks, so she finally said: Something I will never forget. She said: “Young boy” I have prophecy, I spiritual prophecy. She Said: “You are going to travel around the world” and speaks to millions of peoples and in the year that followed, Just as that woman prophesied, I have traveled around the world, And I have spoken to millions of people through my movies, millions who up until this day couldn’t see me while I was talking to them and they couldn’t see me, they could only see the movie, they couldn’t see the real me but I see you today and I’m encouraged by what I see because taking risk is not just about going for a job. Its also knowing about what you know and what you don’t know. It’s about being open to people and to ideas the chances to take, the people you meet, the people you love, that faith you have, that’s what is going to define you never be discouraged, never hold back, give everything you have got and when you fall throughout life remember this FALL FORWARD.