There they are in a sea of caps and gowns. From nursery school to Columbia University (where my daughter will receive her Master’s Degree today) and everything in between, we call it “commencement.” The word means beginning, like starting something new. We assume that the grads are thinking about their new life and in most cases, the job hunt. But some speculate that it’s more immediate. For instance, “I wonder if this tie my dad gave me to wear is even fashionable anymore? People are kind of looking at me funny…” Or “I hope the place I picked out for dinner is okay for my Grandma with her picky eating habits… she seem to have something to say about everything.” Musicians in the band can’t get their minds off playing through that one part that they prob should have practiced more. Or at the Red Robin Nursery annual ceremonies, the five-year-olds couldn’t wait to get to the celebratory Peanut Butter Balls, hand-rolled by—you guessed it: the little kids! Ahh yeah, shhhurrre I’ll have half-dozen of those, or maybe I’ll wait a bit!
I personally have sat through at least a couple dozen of annuals of all levels and scopes. I have applauded a gazillion times. I have been hot, cold, and tired (even dozing off on a few occasions). Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs says that immediacy thinking is natural, like what is my next goal? Sometimes it is as simple but profound as finding a urinal. We are all perpetually graduating from something in life. That never stops. Baby steps. Emily Freeman titles her new book, “The Next Right Thing.” I like to throw one more word in there… just do the next, BEST right thing! That’s all any of us can truly and practically achieve in what feels to be the most-scariest world any of us have seen to date. But it all gets better from here, and we are all part of bettering that situation. Do your own “next best,” and I will do mine. How can we miss?!