We have just finished the commencement season with many graduates listening to many speeches offering sage advice for their futures.

          Several years ago I gave such a speech and used words attributed to Winston Churchill saying "Change is the master key."

          My understanding of those words was literal as I personally changed my path over a dozen times before starting Valu-Line - the Long Distance Company in 1981 at age 35.

          Point being: if your job or life situation isn't working for you do not be afraid to make a change. Life is too short to not enjoy what we do.

          Funny thing - though - when Googling "Change is the master key," I can't find it attributed to Churchill or anyone!

          What I have found are some interesting quotes from the former highly respected British statesman.

Churchill did say these things about change and planning:

  • There is nothing wrong with change if it is in the right direction.
  • To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often.
  • Plans are worthless, but planning is everything.

On courage and success he said:

  • It is not enough that we do our best; sometimes we must do what is required.
  • Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.
  • Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.
  • Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.

Churchill was not a fan of socialism having said!

  • Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.

He was also an optimist:

  • The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees opportunity in every difficulty.

Churchill had a wonderful sense of humor:

  • Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way they look forward to the trip.
  • If you are going through hell, keep going.
  • You can always count on Americans to do the right thing - after they've tried everything else.

And maybe Winston Churchill's most prolific quotation:

  • We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give. I think that’s worth repeating: Churchill said, We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give.

          History treats Churchill with great respect and his words illustrate he is deserving.

          I'm Steve Sauder


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