Fox Valley Technical College hired me to speak about “Entrepreneurship & Getting The Most Out of Life” to their students. Since they have a small student body, it gave me a chance to really connect with the audience. My favorite part was hanging out with them after presentation and talking about our experiences partying sober. Check out what we talked about during and after the speech.
1 – Doing Difficult Things
Louis D. Brandies said, “If only you would recognize that life is hard, things would be so much easier for you.” Every day we get to choose whether we are going to do something easy, or something worthwhile. Often times our greatest moments and feelings are from overcoming obstacles and becoming better. Mine was turning what made me “uncool” into a business and movement that’s being adopted by more and more students. So set your goal, count the cost and DO IT! (Shia LaBeouf style)!!!
2 – Redefining Failure
If you’re going to do difficult things, you are definitely going to fail. Often times we fear failure though, and will do anything to avoid it. We say we want success. But we’re not willing to fail in order to get it. Arianna Huffington said, “Failure is not the opposite of success. It’s part of success.” During my time in college I failed classes, I failed friends, I failed interviews and a bunch more. But if I hadn’t failed all those times, I’d be the same person I was 6 years ago… and that would be a shame.
3 – Standing Out
Ralph Waldo Emerson said “The biggest challenge in life is to be yourself in a world that’s trying to make you like everybody else.” He’s got a good point too. When I first got to college and didn’t drink… it cost me friends and fun. All I wanted to do was to be accepted, like everyone else. But as soon as I stood out, it showed people that you don’t need to drink in order to make friends, have fun or feel good on the weekends. And the hundreds of people who showed up at our sober parties helped prove that.
The presentation was fun, but as most speakers know… the real reason we speak is to make an impact. So I went into the activities office afterwards to see what they thought of the content. I ended up hanging out with three students as they told me that they also didn’t drink and often felt like “outsiders.” One of them told me that he wants to be social so he goes to drinking parties. He just goes sober. It was cool to hear him tell me about his experiences and I was excited when he asked me things like, “how do you respond when people think you’re weird for not doing what everyone else is doing?” and “how do you have fun at drinking parties?”
We talked for about a half hour, sharing tips for each other and encouraging one another 🙂