I guess this is an appendix to the blog entry I wrote yesterday.
It doesn’t expressly denounce anything I wrote; rather it adds a dimension to the discussion which I would have been unsatisfied with leaving out altogether.
Leading on from the discussion of whether one does something ‘too extremely’ in their lives, I think there is a definite way to decide whether or not one’s efforts are being overused in a certain area of one’s life. It’s rather simple, and some people may read it and think it quite obvious; and that anyone who doesn’t do this is rather incompetent. Nevertheless, even though it may well be a commonly known wisdom about pursuing an action, it never hurts to bring it to the forefront of one’s thoughts with regards to that pursuit.
Whatever it is you are doing in life – be absolutely sure that you know the exact reason behind why you are doing it.
What are you getting out of what it is you’re doing? How will this positively (or negatively) affect your life? Ultimately, does this action by itself yield any benefit to your life, or is it merely a means to an end? In a previous post I’ve dealt with why the latter choice (doing something as a means to an end) is quite a futile one (I think ‘Goals’ – correct me if I’m wrong).
When you know what that thing (or those things) are, then always keep them at the forefront of your thoughts as you pursue whatever action it is. This allows for an almost zen-like focus on progress during the act itself, which acts to centre you as an individual and thus you become more open & sensitive to future ways of improvement/growth.
Also, when those reasons behind your actions become crystal clear to you and you know it to lead to positivity in your life, then commit whole heartedly towards that pursuit. I cannot stress the importance of this last point; of committing fully to that action. Acknowledge that it is your pursuit, your choice, ultimately your life – and own it. Never apologize for following a path that you recognize as being one that you as an individual with a place on this planet and within society must pursue.
People often get unnerved by the negative comments that inevitably start flying once you start to put yourself out there in the world. To this I respond that people will talk shit about you anyway. You’ll never please everyone – and it isn’t your job to be everyone’s friend or to accommodate everyone else’s bullshit ideal of how you should live your life. You could be the nicest and most genuine person ever but I’ll guarantee that there’d be someone giving you shit for being that nice & genuine. That’s just one of those things – you’re damned if you do, you’re damned if you don’t. What’s the alternative – do nothing? Then people will still give you shit about not doing anything with your life other than work/study/watch TV. You can’t win – you can’t please everyone.
Following on from the original post, I think it fitting that I give an example from Lil Wayne. For those who don’t know I used to be very against his music; it was such a shock to hear his odd style of rapping as opposed to what’s considered traditional and ‘normal’ rap. That all changed in 2014 when I started listening to the Carter IV (I had had that album for a few years but never really listened to it). There’s a whole story behind how I converted from being against his music 100% to a die hard fan, but I’ll save that for another day.
Anyway, I am a fan of his now and I find him to be a genuinely intelligent individual. If you watch some interviews with him and can navigate his thick southern slang and get to the heart of what he talks about, there is actually a lot of thought and meaning behind his words. Case in point is from the attached video: his widely criticized venture into rock music with the album ‘Rebirth’ alienated a lot of his fans and is widely considered his worst offering to the music industry in his whole career. In the video he explains that he is quite detached from the whole process of taking on the comments of fans in an absolute sense, and thus he is able to truly express himself as he wants to. Why did he make Rebirth? He simply wanted to know how to play guitar and sing to a woman (as he didn’t know how to play guitar at the time). What followed was the production of Rebirth. Unsuccessful album in the eyes of fans, but not from his point of view. He had a reason behind what he wanted to do and he whole-heartedly pursued it with no regrets, and never for a second did he listen to his critics. He just did what he knew he wanted to do. If he listened to the words of his critics he would have gotten nowhere with anything.
Say what you want about the style of his rapping and how he is as a person etc. but you can’t deny that he’s a man with purpose. He works hard and there’s a reason for everything he does. At the very least I think people who are very anti-Lil Wayne (like I used to be) can recognize and appreciate that. I certainly respect it in him now.