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Natalie Portman’s Life Advice Will Leave You Speechless | One of The Most Eye Opening Videos Ever

so i have to admit that today even 12 years after graduation i'm still insecure about my own worthiness i have to remind myself today you are here for a reason today i feel much like i did when i came to harvard yard as a freshman in 1999 when you guys were to my continued shock and horror still in kindergarten i felt like there had been some mistake that i wasn't smart enough to be in this company and that every time i opened my mouth i would have to prove i wasn't just a dumb actress so i start with an apology this won't be very funny i'm not a comedian and i didn't get a ghostwriter but i am here to tell you today harvard is giving you all diplomas tomorrow you are here for a reason sometimes your insecurities and your inexperience may lead you to to embrace other people's expectations standards or values but you can harness that inexperience to carve out your own path one that is free of the burden of knowing how things are supposed to be a path that is defined by its own particular set of reasons the other day i went to an amusement park with my soon-to-be four-year-old son and i watched him play arcade games he was incredibly focused throwing his ball at the target jewish mother that i am i skipped 20 steps and was already imagining him as a major league player with what his his aim and his arm and his concentration but then i realized that when he won he was playing to trade in his tickets for the crappy plastic toys the prize was much more exciting than the game to get it i of course wanted to urge him to take joy in the challenge of the game the improvement upon practice the satisfaction of doing something well and even feeling the accomplishment when achieving the game's goals but all of these aspects were shaded by the little 10-cent plastic men with sticky stretchy blue arms that adhere to the walls that that was the prize in a child's nature we see many of our own innate tendencies i saw myself in him and perhaps you do too prizes serve as false idols everywhere prestige wealth fame power you will be exposed to many of these if not all of course part of why i was invited to come speak today beyond my being a proud alum is that i've accrued some very coveted toys in my life including a not so plastic not so crappy one an oscar so we bump up against a common trope i think of the commencement address people who have achieved a lot telling you that the fruits of achievement are not always to be trusted but i think that contradiction can be reconciled and is in fact instructive achievement is wonderful when you know why you're doing it and when you don't know it can be a terrible trap i went to a public high school on long island cyacid high school the girls i went to school with had prada bags and flat ironed hair and they spoke with an accent i who would move there at age nine from connecticut mimic to fit in florida oranges chocolate cherries since i'm ancient and the internet was just starting when i was in high school people didn't really pay that much attention to the fact that i was an actress i was known mainly at school for having a backpack bigger than i was and always having white out on my hands as i hated seeing anything crossed out in my notebooks i was voted for my senior yearbook most likely to be a contestant on jeopardy or code for nerdiest when i got to harvard just after the release of star wars episode 1 i knew i would be starting over in terms of how people viewed me i feared people would assume i had gotten in just for being famous and that they would think i was not worthy of the intellectual rigor here and they would not have been far from the truth when i came here i had never written a 10-page paper before i'm not even sure i'd written a five-page paper i was alarmed and intimidated by the calm eyes of fellow students who came here from dalton or exeter who thought that compared to high school the workload here was easy i was completely overwhelmed and thought that reading a thousand pages a week was unimaginable that writing a 50 page thesis was just something i could never do i had no idea how to declare my intentions i couldn't even articulate them to myself i'd been acting since i was 11 but i thought acting was too frivolous and certainly not meaningful i came from a family of academics and was very concerned with being taken seriously in contrast to my inability to declare myself on my first day of orientation freshman year five separate students introduced themselves to me by saying i'm going to be president remember i told you that their names for the record were bernie sanders mark rubio ted cruz barack obama and hillary clinton [Music] in all seriousness i believed every one of them their bearing and self-confidence alone seemed proof of their prophecy where i couldn't shake my self-doubt i got in only because i was famous this was how others saw me it was how i saw myself driven by these insecurities i decided that i was going to find something to do at harvard that was serious and meaningful that would change the world and make it a better place at the age of 18 i had already been acting for seven years and assumed i'd find a more serious and profound path in college so freshman fall i decided to take neurobiology and advanced modern hebrew literature because i was serious and intellectual needless to say i should have failed both i got bees for your information and to this day every sunday i spurn a small effigy to the pagan gods of great inflation but as i was fighting my way through aleph bet yahushua in hebrew and the different mechanisms of neural response i saw friends around me writing papers on sailing and pop culture magazines and professors teaching classes on fairy tales and the matrix i realized that seriousness was its own kind of trophy and a dubious one a pose i sought to counter some half-imagined argument about who i was there was a reason i was an actor i love what i do and i saw from my peers and my mentors that that was not only an acceptable reason it was the best reason when i got to my graduation sitting where you sit today after four years of trying to get excited about something else i admitted to myself that i couldn't wait to go back and make more films i wanted to tell stories to imagine the lives of others and help others do the same i had found or perhaps reclaimed my reason you have a prize now or at least you will tomorrow the prize is a harvard degree in your hand but what is your reason behind it my harvard degree represents for me the curiosity and invention that were encouraged here the friendships i've sustained the way professor graham told me not to describe the way light hit a flower but rather the shadow that the flower cast the way professor scary talked about theater as a transformative religious force how professor costlyn showed how much of our visual cortex is activated just by imagining now granted these things don't necessarily help me answer the most common questions i'm as

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