My friend Dobie Maxwell brought to my attention this commencement speech given by Matthew McConaughey . If you haven’t seen it, it is worth watching.
I’m a huge Matthew McConaughey fan. Once when someone made the mistake of calling me in the middle of the night, I laid down the law. I said, “there are only 3 people who can call me in the middle of the night…my niece if she is in trouble, my parents if there is an emergency, and Matthew McConaughey for any damn reason he wants.”
Even if I wasn’t a fan, this speech is powerful. It’s geared towards college graduates but makes points that all of us need to hear. It is a few years old, but holds up well…as does Matthew McConaughey in my opinion.
One point in particular struck me. I believe it was the last one: “Leave No Crumbs.” Crumbs he explains are “choices we make that make us have to look over our shoulder in the future.” He went on to say they come in the form of regret, guilt and remorse.
This hit home for me, mainly because it was something I had been tackling even before hearing the speech. There were some things that I felt were holding me back. Things I felt were easier to push to the back burner…aka ignore…but that never quite went away. I didn’t want to tackle them but was reaching a point where I had to.
I made a list. A list of the hurdles that were in my way. I left out the guilt or the reasons why they were on the list but starting defining ways to address them. Some I could address on my own, others I needed assistance from other people. Either way, I started finding ways to jump over or knock down these hurdles. And then I prioritized them. What needed to be done immediately? What could I hold off on for the time being?
The funny part is, I found out that it took less time to get rid of the situations then it did for me to find ways to ignore them. And the results were immediate. Some of the problems were delegated to outside sources. While they were working on the issue, I worked on the next item on the list. Pretty soon, I was crossing things off and feeling great. Almost empowered.
That new energy and enthusiasm allowed me to start projects that I had been holding off on. Projects that I really wanted to do but because of the other baggage felt I couldn’t face them. With the burdens lifted I was free to start new ventures…and it’s been fun.
Mr. McConaughey said that we need to “create outcomes that pay us back.” His example was residuals. If he makes a good movie, and it plays over and over, years later he’ll still be getting a check. That’s a great feeling. It works for other things too. The foundation you lay today may lead to a successful career down the road. The education you’re getting will pay off in the future.
“Crumbs” consume us. They suck the energy out of us. And they are completely unproductive. They spread into all aspects of our lives and if not attended to actually become the focus of our lives.
There are many outstanding points in Matthew’s talk but for me “Don’t Leave Crumbs” is the most powerful. I’ve adopted it as my new mantra.
Locally Grown Comedy Show
If you are looking for a fun evening the last Tuesday of the month, drop by Vitello’s in Studio City for Wendy Liebman’s Locally Grown Comedy Show. There’s plenty of good food, great camaraderie and lots and lots of laughs! Visit Vitello’s website for more information.
How to Succeed with Your Home Owners Association by Linda Perret
Owning your own home is the America dream. But often along with that comes a homeowner’s association. In this book, Linda explains the ins and outs of an association and how you can avoid many of the pitfalls. Whether you currently live in an HOA or looking to buy into one, this book is a must have. Order your copy here.
Master Course in
A 12-week email class that covers the basics of comedy writing. Features lessons and feedback.
Master Course in
A 9-step program that takes the writer through the process of developing a monologue. You will work on a topic of your own choosing.
A weekly exercise is emailed you for you to work on. You return your work and we offer feedback on your material.