I think the major event that shaped my life was being a Naval aviator. I got my commission and wings at 18 years old, and then I went into combat at 19. And I think, as I look back on it, that whole experience probably shaped my life more than any incident, or any event.
And so, as they climb the ladder of achievement, I'd simply say, remember what Barbara Bush told those girls at Wellesley: "What happens in your house is more important than what happens in the White House."
If I were to give advice to young people, high-achieving young people for example, I'd have to say, don't neglect your family. Politics is important, sitting at the head table is glamorous. Traveling around the world, trying to do something for world peace was wonderful. But . . . Family and friends and faith are what are really matters in life. And I know that. I see it so clearly now.
It's family, and it's faith, and it's friends, and it's not the glamour of the Presidency, or the wonder of going to receive the Nobel Prize. All those are important, of course. But maybe it's just that I'm 71 years old now. It's family, and it's faith, and it's friends. I would tell them that. Don't forget that. In your brilliance, don't turn your back on your friends. Don't think you're entitled to something, you're smarter than the next guy.