The Van Trump Report

HARDY’S Commencement Address and a Few Great Life Hacks

It’s that time of year, and we’ve got lots of graduation parties happening. I always like hearing the kids talk about their dreams and goals for the future. Didn’t we all have so many big plans and aspirations standing in that gym in our caps and gowns? 

This past weekend Michael Wilson Hardy, known in the country music world simply as HARDY, delivered a great commencement address for the graduating class of his alma mater “Middle Tennessee State University”. After receiving a standing ovation at the college, HARDY went and performed on stage with Morgan Wallen in front of 50,000 fans at Nissan Stadium in Nashville, TN.

For those who don’t know, HARDY came from a small town in Mississippi. After high school, he attended Middle Tennessee State University. Shortly after graduating, Hardy took a trip to visit his sister in Nashville, TN. He never left, and the rest is history. Today, HARDY has appeared on 15 No. 1 singles, and written hit songs for such country stars as Florida Georgia Line (Simple), Blake Shelton (God’s Country), and Morgan Wallen (Sand in My BootsUp Down) just to name a few.

Below are a few of the highlights from HARDY’s commencement address. You can see the full speech HERE

“Don’t be afraid to say yes to an opportunity just because you don’t think you will see an immediate result. You never know where your successes will come from. Take chances on people, take a chance on things, and most importantly take a chance on yourself.”

“If your gut is ever telling you to stand up for yourself, go with your gut every single time. And when you do that, you gain pride, and when you gain pride you gain self-confidence, and self-confidence is fuel for success.”

“Imposter Syndrome is real. I’ve realized that every successful person at some point has looked themself in the mirror and said I have no idea what I’m doing, but they did it anyway. Success can be extremely overwhelming, especially if you have come from nothing, as you might be thinking you don’t deserve it or you’re not good enough. This is when you have to look back in the mirror at yourself, laugh, and say I’m doing it anyway. Just remember, everybody battles it but try your best not to fight yourself when it comes to your own success.” 

“Root for your peers, go out of your way for people, celebrate others’ successes, be a kind person, show love, and lead a life of integrity because it is our duty and responsibility as human beings on this great planet to positively impact one another. I promise, eventually, you will be rewarded for the person you are.”  

“I had what some people would call a mental breakdown a few months back. It lasted for a week and consisted of the most crippling anxiety and panic attacks that seemed to come out of nowhere. But what came out of that experience was an amazing discovery… I had too much shit on my plate and started to feel like life was passing me by. I was spending less and less quality time with my family and friends and this caused me to slip into an anxious and depressed state, but I didn’t realize it until it was too late. I know everyone wants to be the most successful person in their field, but I am here to remind you that life is a spectrum of colors, and if you are only focusing or dedicating your time and life to one color, you will never find true happiness. Real success is having every color in your spectrum of life lit up.”     

To all of those families that have someone graduating this year… congrats! Our family wishes the kids all the best in the next chapter of their lives. For all of us old folks… “pay it forward”. This simply means, that rather than directly paying back all of the people throughout our lives who have given us great advice or help, it’s now our turn to share and pass on the advice and help. Pay it forward!

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