This is adapted from “10½ Things No Commencement Speaker Has Ever Said,” by Charles Wheelan.

8.  Performing animals do tricks because their trainers throw them peanuts or small fish for doing so.  You should aspire to do better.  You will be a friend, a parent, a coach, an employee—and so on.  But only in your job will you be explicitly evaluated and rewarded for your performance.  Don’t let your life decisions be distorted by the fact that your boss is the only one tossing your peanuts.  If you leave a work task undone in order to meet a friend for dinner, then you are “shirking” your work.  But it’s also true that if you cancel dinner to finish or work, then you are shirking your friendship.  That’s just not how we usually think of it.

9.  It’s all borrowed time.  You shouldn’t take anything for granted, not even tomorrow.

10.  Don’t try to be great.  Being great involves luck and other circumstances beyond your control.  The less you think about being great, the more likely it is to happen.   And if it doesn’t, there is absolutely nothing wrong with being solid.

Good luck and congratulations to all those who are graduating next month.  Read the whole list and smile.