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“Be Your Own Cheerleader”

“Be Your Own Cheerleader”

Video Source: YouTube 

Who said commencement speeches were only meant for college grads? I recently watched Mindy Kaling’s address at Dartmouth’s graduation, and it was probably the best 17 minutes I’ve spent in a long time. Though some of the Dartmouth-insider jokes went over my head, the speech was funny, lighthearted and super impactful. I’ve outlined a few key takeaways below, if you so wish to visit your SparkNotes college days:

• Kaling begins by drawing a parallel to the president in showing what you can achieve by simply believing in yourself: the ‘super power’ of delusion, as she states: “If that’s [The Donald] not testament to how far you can go just by believing in yourself – that you are the smartest, most successful person in the world. My point is, you have to have insane confidence in yourself, even if it’s not real.”

• Then, she continues with the ever-so-subtle, cold truth of the real world: “You need to be your own cheerleader now, because there isn’t a room full of people waiting with pom poms to tell you, ‘You did it! We’ve been waiting all this time to succeed!'” though brings us back with the motivation that we all need to hear, and maybe do a *little* more of ourselves, too: “So, I’m giving you permission to root for yourself, and while you’re at it, root for others around you too. Success isn’t a zero-sum game.”

• Not to forget her jab at the gender wage gap (preach), Mindy goes on to address all the females in the audience: “Hey girls, we need to do a better job of supporting each other. Wouldn’t it be better if we work together to dismantle a system with limited room for us?” A-f*cking-men, Mindy! Teamwork sure does make the dream work, right?

So, as I sit here writing about how much I needed to hear these words today, I’ll end with the last truth bomb of her speech: “Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something, but especially not yourself.” Thanks, Mindy, cause it sure never hurts to have these gentle reminders to be NICE to one another, SUPPORT each other and ROOT ON each other as we collectively strive to reach our goals.

Posted by Olivia