"Believing In Yourself is a Matter of Evidence" - Excerpt from Commencement Speech by CJ Hunt '00
Enjoy this excerpt from the Commencement remarks by CJ Hunt '00, delivered at Fay School's Commencement on June 8, 2019.
“I WANT YOU TO THINK FOR A MOMENT about who you were when you first set foot on campus. And now think about who you are now—and in that space in between, I want you to think about all the things that you've tried. Water polo, kimchi, photography, lacrosse—I just want you to think about the things that you were like, ‘hm, this might not go well, let me see about this.’
I'll bet that somewhere in the accumulation of all those tries, you found something out about yourself that you never knew, that you stumbled on a new part of yourself that you never saw coming—and I'll bet that some of you in this audience now define yourself based on a talent that you discovered here. And that's because of the simple fact that trying changes us. In fact, you could say all we are is just a collection of things that we tried. And whether or not we're successful at what we're trying, we're learning every time.
So, for example, consider your recent trip to the Dominican Republic. On that trip, a lot of you realized that your class is cooler than you ever knew, and that your teachers are more patient than you ever knew. Some of you discovered that you have a talent for teaching, and others of you discovered that you definitely do not have a talent for teaching. But you learned that if you feel unsuccessful in the moment, you go home, scrape yourself back together, and come back and try again another day.
And that's what I wish somebody had told me when I was graduating from Fay. That trying is how you learn to believe in yourself. People talk about believing in yourself as if it were some function of optimism, just seeing things on the bright side. I don't think that's true. I think believing in yourself is a matter of evidence.
Every time you try something, you leave behind a trail of hard evidence about what you like, what you don't like, and most importantly, what you're capable of. And the evidence that you have created here at Fay through all the things that you have tried is something that you're going to take with you as tools for the rest of your life. It's the armor you will wear as you wade through any situation that makes you feel ‘less than.’”Read more about CJ here
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