By: Kyle Colley
Overly dedicated is one phrase to describe the ambition of Kendrick Lamar. A master of his craft, Kendrick has been an inspiration for kids to stay away from becoming a product of their impressionable city environments. Lamar motivates them to spread their wings like a butterfly before they are influenced and “pimped” by the system.
Whether you have been a fan since Kendrick was named K.Dot, just heard To Pimp A Butterfly, or have never listen to any of his music; hopefully by the end of this countdown, his words will inspire you to continue to strive for excellence.
- Build a Community of Growth
“ I’m tryna learn something new, I’m tryna surround myself with people that inspire me” (“Cut You Off”)
Take inventory of who is in your friend circle. Are the people you surround yourself with assets or detriments? Do they encourage you to raise your standards or are they content with being mediocre? Your friends have to be as hungry to succeed as you are or eventually you will grow apart.
In the words of the famous life coach Jim Rohn, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” Find friends dedicated to growing, and you will be amazed at what greatness can sprout from you.
“You’re blessed, take advantage, do your best, Don’t stress you was granted everything inside this planet, anything you imagine, you possess” (“Blessed”)
Often times we are so busy living, we overlook the simplicity and beauty that is our life. Water, the sun, the moon, nature, books, food, friends and family are all things to be thankful for. But…often times, we are more concerned with what type of gratification materialistic things can bring, we overlook the beauty around us.
Aristotle talks about Eudaimonia, which is an embodiment of perfect well-being and blissful happiness. To reach this state of well-being you have to see the essential blessings that are all around you.
3) Establish Your Legacy
“Am I really scared of passing away? If it’s today, I hope I hear a cry out from heaven so loud it can water down a demon with the Holy Ghost ‘til it drown in the blood of Jesus” (“Sing About Me, Dying of Thirst”)
Have you ever asked yourself what legacy you want to leave on this earth? Beginning a habit of asking yourself more thoughtful questions, allows you to see the bigger picture in life and helps you dismiss limiting factors more readily. You establish your legacy by the person you become everyday.
And…just by consciously being aware of this, you allow yourself the ability to make accurate life choices. Always remember it takes a lifetime to build a polished legacy and a second to destroy it – always protect the asset!
“What love got to do with it when you do not love yourself” (“Real”)
Love is the essential ingredient for all human growth. What is passion, without love? What is peace without an expression of love? As humans we might never be able to define it, but it will forever be a universal language.
The people who love inward-outward can express it freely without any inflections to their soul. The people who search outward-inward may ultimately find a provision of love, but only self-love can detect false love that penetrates the soul.
Self-love is often difficult for people to feel, because at times they look external-internal instead of internal-external. No one can teach you how to love, it is something that you have to find from within, and it is in all of us.
5) Be Authentic
“ You ain’t gotta lie to kick it, You ain’t gotta lie” [“You Ain’t Gotta Lie (Momma Said)”]
To be authentic you have to figure out who you are (cliché right). You have to be comfortable with your imperfections and allow yourself to be heard. Try letting your imperfections shine, people will respect you for it.
Remember, people only lie because they are afraid, and fear is a state of mind, meaning it can be neutralized and ultimately triumphed. Make it a focal point to strive to be your most charismatic self each day and the world will follow your lead.
6) Be Unquenchable
“ I captured the likes of NASA, My pedigree to fly pass ya” (“Rigamortus”)
Never be completely satisfied with your achievements; there should always be a new goal that you allow your mind to focus on. Michael Jordan was not satisfied with his first three championships, he decided that he needed to get three more. Vincent Van Gogh was not content with just making Cafe Terrace at Night, he decided that he needed to follow it up with The Starry Night.
Relentlessness is the principle! The only way to truly stay motivated is to personally make the decision to be driven by the goal that you have set for yourself. Never be completely satisfied – there is always a new goal to reach.
7) Be a Game Changer
“ But little did they know, I’m tryna change the rules, That we’ve been confined to, so the corporate won’t make decisions” (The Heart Pt. 2)
You have to take pride in being yourself, that is the first principle of becoming a game changers. By being a person that sees the world in a different way than others do, you might feel and be treated like an outcast; you have to be willing to see the end, even in the beginning and middle of your development.
To be a game changer, you are not going to see eye to eye with everyone, however, you must still be open and willing to win friends and influence people in the process. If you understand and follow the previous steps, this part will happen naturally because you will realize that the majority of the world invest for the day, not for a lifetime.
In the powerful words of the motivational life coach Eric Thomas, “ greatness cannot be rushed,” invest in the process, reap the harvest!
Proverb: Have a sponge mentality with music. It is not always what the artist says that is important, often times it is the underlying message that needs to be analyzed.
Kyle Colley is a sophomore political science major from Denver, Colorado who attends Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia.
Editors: Kristopher Colley II and Janet Colley