By: Kam Willard
“Picture me being scared of a nigga that breathe the same air as me”.
The best lyricist to ever touch a microphone taught me this. Society tells us that we’re no different than the next individual. We’ve all got our own luggage filled with the hardest of haymakers life has hurled our way, not to mention the tattered and weathered garments from the toughest journeys we’ve travelled back and forth in.
Did I forget to add we put those garments on in the same fashion as everyone else too? The line “They put their pads on the same way you do!” resonates with me from those competitive youth gridiron days.
‘He’s no different than me… what am I to be afraid of?!’ A mentality I developed from the Biggie line above. I almost use “Niggas Bleed” as a rap self-help anthem.
But during idle moments I think to myself, “You are one special person.”
Now, I know what you may be thinking. Everybody thinks they’re special.
Mentally placing everyone on the same plane helps eliminate fear and hesitation in your dealings with other people. At that point it’s anyone’s game. At that point, what reason do I have for why I shouldn’t stand victorious at the end of it all? What makes them better than me?
That particular theory works when you are hyping yourself up and diminishing doubt and fear when looking at others, but what about when you take an introspective look at yourself?
I’m talking about the look where you’re searching for that “light” inside of you. Can you remember the instances where it was hard to locate that light? That specific inner voice that’s a different tone than the ones you hear on the daily basis. That particular fire that burns at a higher temperature than others.
The “it factor” resting inside of you that separates you from the herd.
When you’re constantly observing the world through a lens that equalizes everyone, you sometimes find that your lens becomes cloudy and prevents you from seeing the brilliance that resides within you. How can you truly look inside of yourself if you’ve ignored it for so long?
In the pursuit to find what I believe differentiates myself from the pack, I stumbled upon a revelation. I found that I shouldn’t think about embarking upon a life-altering trek to realize some miraculous discovery about myself. I should be directing my energy and concentration toward my dream and what I find myself undeniably passionate about. And, as I’m relentlessly pursuing that dream, the result will be what I am indeed in search of: the breakthrough.
The universe always rewards those that deposit the sweat and hard work.
Through all of the tribulations and every bit of adversity that you meet, the more you stare those obstacles down and continue to keep your feet moving, your mind evolving, your hunger growing, remaining perseverant, and developing creative methods . . . you will achieve those desired outcomes you’ve worked so hard for.
We are bred to accept this norm that everyone is equal regardless of opinion. It may appear diverse on the surface, but we’re all human beings going through life, undergoing its challenges and trying to find the pockets of time that bring us joy. Too much of this taints our ability to look deep inside ourselves, to find our special traits that separate us from the other rats in the race. This mindset keeps us confined and unadventurous, unwilling to explore and test ourselves to find the MORE that life has to offer.
Society tells us to repeat the same steps as generations before because it’s safe. This protects you from the additional dangers that taking risks will bring about. Stay in that career all of your life, put money into your 401k, work for 30+ years for a pension. Don’t even think about stepping outside of the status quo, don’t wander off from the beaten path, don’t go against the grain or question everything you’ve once known—DON’T! DON’T! DON’T!
But there’s beauty in the struggle. Life is going to be hard any way you see it. Squeeze the fruit to get the juice that YOU want to drink, don’t settle for oranges because everyone else drinks OJ for breakfast.
Going after what we love and having a mindset that accepts the challenges that these decisions will bring are choices we should all make. We get one life to live, and choosing this option gives the best return on investment. Gambling on yourself with an unwavering appetite to win will gift you the breakthrough you deserve.
Make the deposits, be true to the grind and the Universe will reward you. See it through.