You Are Not Special Graduates

As a society we’ve come to adore accolades more than achievement. If you are like me and have campaigned against each member of the soccer team getting a trophy at the end of the season this commencement speech will appeal to you.

If on the other hand you think constant positive reinforcement with no discipline is the way to raise kids…this message will seem foreign to you.

Thanks for visiting. Comments are welcome.


  1. I watched this speech over the weekend and applaud his words.

    Recently, I posted something on Facebook to the effect of, “When the ordinary is constantly celebrated as special, what celebration is left when something extraordinary is achieved.” Same idea.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks Tracey. Well said. When I was coaching Little League in the 90s I tried to convince team parents to abandon trophies for all kids and was roundly shot down. Now maybe people are starting to recognize that to celebrate everything and everyone is to celebrate nothing.

  2. Thanks for posting this speech. I have just attended my daughter’s college graduation, and while I am proud of her accomplishment, I have also told her this is only the beginning. Every parent there was proud of their child. Now go out into the “real world” and do good!

    • Thanks for your comment, Robbi. As the video suggests we’re all only special in that everyone is special. You have every reason to be proud of your daughter.

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