Monday Morning Boost: How Dare I…

Monday Morning Boost: How Dare I…

Her words repeatedly chug through my soul like a freight train steadily plugging up a mountain pass.

“How dare I…”

A beautiful story of vision and effort seemed to take on a poetic pattern of repetition continually etching her words of counsel deep into my thinking.

“How dare I be anything…”

It wasn’t luck that brought her to this point, she emphasized to the graduates, but the vision of her mother whose shoulders she rode upon.

“How dare I be anything but great.”

When one has worked hard and sacrificed much to help you achieve, such as Ayleen Perry shared her mother had for her, how indeed dare we be anything but great???

Ayleen was chosen to deliver the Student Graduation Address at Southern Utah University’s commencement. Her message repeatedly emphasized it wasn’t luck nor her efforts alone that brought her here, but the vision of her hardworking mother.


Most people tend to work hard at what they do. But not always do they have a vision guiding why they are working hard and directing their efforts.

Conversely, some have a vision of what they want to achieve but fail to put in the requisite hard work. This is often true regardless if their vision is grandiose or down-to-earth.

Great things can be achieved when vision is combined with hard work.

“All successful people men and women are big dreamers. They imagine what their future could be, ideal in every respect, and then they work every day toward their distant vision, that goal or purpose.”
Brian Tracy

Ayleen honored her mother’s vision and hard work be creating her own vision and then putting in the hard work. When the naysayers doubted she could graduate in four years, Ayleen, in her own words, “did it in three with the highest university honors, a 3.9 GPA, four medals, as an immigrant, Afro-Latina, first-generation college grad.”


Our son-in-law Taylor is also working hard to honor a vision. His graduation was the reason for our trip to Cedar City.

Taylor has made it through four years of school. The first two were at Snow College where he and Rebecca met, then these last two at Southern Utah University.

Taylor’s vision and hard work have earned him leadership opportunities while at school. Last summer, they translated into working in Washington, D.C. as an intern for Senator Orrin Hatch.

More hard work and schooling is on the horizon as Taylor jumps right back into the books preparing to take the LSAT to get into law school and as he works supporting Rebecca as she works to finish her bachelor’s next spring.

A vision that once belonging to his parents, and probably still does to a degree, is now owned by Taylor and vicariously he shares ownership with Rebecca.

Sharing our vision will magnify our hard work. Sharing our vision with someone who is intended to be our equal partner in all things, magnifies it the greatest.

Like Ayleen, I believe Rebecca and Taylor also dare and strive to be great. Great for each other, and great to honor the visions of those they love.


I leave you with two final thoughts from commencement:

“One person’s story is like a ripple in a pond capable of creating tides around the world.”
– Ann Leavitt, Matriarch of the Leavitt Insurance Group, speaking on her 86th birthday

“Make today the best today. Then tomorrow make today the best today.”
– Scott Wyatt, President of Southern Utah University.

Have a great Monday! Thanks for letting me share.

Les Patterson

p.s. Take 13 minutes today to share your vision and magnify your hard work.

p.s.s. All quotes are as I remember them. Any inaccuracies are my responsibility.

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