Matthew McConaughey Shares 5 Life Lessons During the University of Houston Commencement Address.

The Oscar-winning actor delivered the commencement address at the University of Houston graduation ceremony.
Oscar-winning actor Matthew McConaughey shared his own personal experiences with the University of Houston graduates when he delivered the school's commencement speech on Friday evening.

The Dallas Buyers Club star spoke in the university's new football stadium — where his father, “Big Jim” McConaughey, once played for the college's football team — and delivered 5 pieces of wisdom for the new graduates based on what he learned from his own experiences.

1. Life is not easy

“Do not fall into the entitlement trap of feeling like a victim,” said McConaughey. “You are not. Get over it and get on with it. Yes, most things are more rewarding when you break a sweat to get them.”

2. “Unbelievable” is the stupidest word in the dictionary

The actor stated that the word “unbelievable” should never come out of anybody's mouth, and people should give each other more credit when it's due. He also added it's not “unbelievable” when people perform out-of-character actions, such as missing a deadline. “If there's one thing you can depend on people being, it's people,” said McConaughey. “I think ‘unbelievable' is an unbelievably stupid word.”

3. Happiness is different than joy

The actor noted that once he started acting in films that brought him joy rather than happiness, he started receiving more success. “As soon as the work, the daily making of the movie, the doing of the deed, became the reward in itself for me,” he said, “I got more box office, more accolades, more respect than I ever had before.

4. Define success for yourself

McConaughey says he defines himself by five things: fatherhood, being a good husband, health, career, and friendships. “I want to keep all five in healthy shape,” he said. “If I don't keep maintenance on them, one of them is going to get weak.

5. “Don't leave crumbs” — and the beauty of delayed gratification

“If I do my job well today and that movie keeps re-running on TV, five years from now I'm getting checks in the mailbox,” he said. “It's a heck of a deal. Get some return on investment.”

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Speaker: Matthew McConaughey

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