Evolving into Clarity

Bill Benson’s June Tip: I AM Radio: Tuning into Your Clear Channel

Miranda Benson

Miranda Benson

When I graduated High School, music was something we manually tuned into, not something we digitally downloaded.

Back in the day, Michael Jackson or Jackson Browne were never interrupted by Internet advertising, rather, the culprit to quality was over-the-air static: other radio signals bouncing around us and distorting the performance of our receivers.

At times it took a lot of patience and finesse to dial into a AM/FM station that provided clear delivery and a good sound environment.

Last week I had the honor of watching three of my niece/nephews don their caps and gowns and walk across their high school’s football field (another niece is getting her diploma in the Midwest, as I write this).

As I watched, I was keenly aware of the passage of time and the cyclical nature of life. I was mostly affected by the electricity in the air – the air of excitement generated by 400+ young men and women on the brink of self-definition.

I thought to myself: “What sage advice would I impart, if I were valedictorian?”

If I were speaking before the Class of 2014, I would tell today’s youth that, despite all the technological advancements since I graduated, life is still a lot like old-school radio.

Tuning in

I would address how their adult lives will require that they actively scan for appropriate responses to the complications of maturity. I would speak to the process of using life’s daily static to help them define their unique qualities and abilities. I would note that their poise under pressure will determine how strong their signal, how wide their reach, and how great their impact.

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken
– Oscar Wilde

I often rely on children’s book wisdom because the simpler the point, the clearer the message. So I would probably end my imaginary speech with an excerpted life prescription from none other than Dr. Seuss:

You have brains in your head and feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
You’re on your own and you know what you know.
And you are the one who’ll decide where to go….

You’re off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting,
So… get on your way!
– Oh, The Places You’ll Go!

There are so many “places to go” in life: Whether you’re graduating from high school or matriculating through life, hop in your car and enjoy the journey – just be sure to tune in your radio….

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