“Mistakes lead to the best things”

Live, learn, love… and “shake it off”.

Grammy winner Taylor Swift made New York University’s 2022 graduation ceremony the hottest ticket in town on Wednesday as she rocked the podium at Yankee Stadium to address the graduating class.

The 32-year-old singer-songwriter was the guest of honor and wore a purple gown and black velvet cap punctuated by her signature red lip.

“Let me just say: Welcome to New York, it’s been waiting for you,” Swift began the speech with a grin and lyrics from her 2014 hit song, joking that the last time she was in a stadium, ” danced that size wearing heels and a glittery leotard.”

“I’m… 90% sure the main reason I’m here is because I have a song called ’22,'” she quipped, lamenting that she “never got the normal college experience per se had”, although she filmed her music video “Love Story” in a college dorm.

“But I really can’t complain … because you went to NYU during a global pandemic,” she said.

Grammy-winning songwriter Taylor Swift arrives at NYU's graduation ceremony at Yankee Stadium where she received an honorary Doctor of Arts degree.
Grammy-winning songwriter Taylor Swift arrives at NYU’s graduation ceremony at Yankee Stadium where she received an honorary Doctor of Arts degree.
Stephen Yang
Swift's inaugural address was full of "life hacks" about love, navigating life and leaning on frightening moments to encourage graduates to embrace their enthusiasm.
Swift’s inaugural address was packed with “life hacks” about love, navigating life, and leaning on terrifying moments that encouraged graduates to embrace their enthusiasm and shake off mistakes.
Stephen Yang

Then, Swift offered some serious advice on how to let go of grudges, ex-boyfriends, and any toxic relationship to make room for the new chapters while learning to “live next to the scares.” (Jake Gyllenhaal might wonder how successfully Swift has done this in her own life.)

“No matter how hard you try not to flinch, you will look back on your life and cringe in retrospect. You can’t avoid it, so don’t try,” she said, noting a phase in 2012 when she was “dressing like a 1950s housewife.”

“I had fun,” she said. “Looking back and laughing is fun… I’m a big advocate of not hiding your excitement about things… You gotta hear me when I say this: never be ashamed to try,” she advised.

She preached the importance of making mistakes because she remembers feeling like she couldn’t make them as a teenager.

Taylor Swift at Yankee Stadium
“I was a teenager at a time when our society was absolutely obsessed with the idea of ​​having perfect young female role models,” Swift said.
Stephen Yang

“It all revolved around the idea that failure equals failure and ultimately the loss of any chance of a happy or worthwhile life. This is not my experience. My mistakes lead to the best things in my life. And feeling embarrassed when you screw up is part of the human experience,” she said.

Swift continued to slam her critics, noting, “I was a teenager at a time when our society was absolutely obsessed with the idea of ​​having perfect young female role models” and “that the world was treating my love life like a spectator sport.” She spoke about the time she was “cancelled” and living life “through a lens of perfectionism.”

She concluded: “I leave it to you: we let our guts, our intuition, our desires and fears, our scars and our dreams guide us. And you will screw it up sometimes. I also. And when I do, you will most likely read about it on the internet.”

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