I'm so sorry that you were not able to attend the commencement ceremony in Moline, Illinois on October 13th at the I Wireless Center. You were greatly missed. The ceremony was lovely. A highlight of the day was our guest speaker, Stedman Graham. He is perhaps best known as TV icon Oprah Winfrey's longtime partner.
Stedman Graham has recently written a book titled, "Identity: Your Passport to Success" in which he spoke to us about it at the graduation on the importance of identifying who we are. He also discussed his nine steps for success, which include having a vision, creating a plan, overcoming fears, and building a "Dream Team." Graham postulates that, everyone has 24 hours each day and it's up to each person to determine how to use that time.
Graham said that many people are stuck in a box doing the same thing over and over, defined by the labels placed upon them by the world.
Stedman also stated in his discussion to everyone there at the graduation ceremony that, "All those things ... are socially constructed to make you think that's who you are, so that the world can control the way you think. And so the process of developing yourself is a leadership process, in which you' have to transform your thinking from a follower to a leader, from a consumer to a producer, from a slave to an owner, especially in the 21st century."
To me, Stedman Graham's main ideas involved the affirmation of one's own self identify. He urged that all the graduates there not to allow others to define us, but we must strive to formulate our own sense of self in order to lead successful lives. If you get a chance to read or hear one of his lectures he does offer a lot of great suggestions for creating a plan to both define and then expedite one’s own definition of success. He also reiterated that our attitudes also strongly affect our sense of identity. Stedman also insisted that one must assert oneself to seize the role of the spirit of the true self which fosters success and strong identity formation as well.
I thought his message was very powerful and meaningful. I truly believe that for me and my fellow graduates at the ceremony that we can take what he taught us and put it to use. I believe everyone can utilize his messages thorough self-assessment and