No, you haven't accidentally stumbled into the Tech vertical. And I am by no means a techie. I'm not even a Mac user (she says, dodging spitballs and epithets).
But as I tried to convey yesterday in my Julianne Moore post, style is far more than what you wear. As the news flew around the Internet last night about Steve Jobs's death succumbing to pancreatic cancer, the sadness was palpable.
We here at Style Goes Strong, indeed Life Goes Strong, if I may be so bold, celebrate midlifers, and all the permutations and possibility this stage of life brings. In true Boomer style, we are redefining what's possible, what's accepted, what's the norm.
So when a generational leader like Steve Jobs leaves us at 56, it's upsetting and unsettling, to say the least. It reminds us of our vulnerability, and the fragility of our goals and aspirations.
But being conscious of that vulnerability, Jobs asserts, is a good thing.
In his 50th year he delivered his first, and last, college commencement speech, to Stanford University's class of 2005. Jobs thought he had beaten pancreatic cancer, and so the man who'd been dubbed a leading egomaniac, had a Scrooge-like transformation and bestowed upon us rich pearls of wisdom:
Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of other's opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary."
His legacy of life-changing technology I leave to others to delineate and commemorate. Although I am forever grateful to be able to work from anywhere in the world and meet deadlines mere minutes before they are due.
But it is this legacy, these words of wisdom that I want to cull together—to have in one place. To watch and read over and over, until they sink in, really sink in.
Because, as a voracious student of history, I know they rarely do, despite best efforts, which is why we need to be re-minded again and again. And again.
In this speech, Jobs also talks about connecting the dots: "You have to believe that they will connect down the road." In my own life I have seen the scattergraph of my life/work begin to dimly form a picture. He's right. I'd best get out the crayons and start coloring wildly to make it come alive. While I am. While we all are.
He has bequested his vision to you. Take it and be a visionary too. The world needs it. The world needs you.
More reminders to live your life now:
- RIP Charla Krupp — Style Angel
- JK Rowling's Commencement Address on Failure
- Now Women are Epic
- Love You with a Sense of Purpose
Hat tip to photographer Zoe Gemelli