“NO” IS NOT A STOP SIGN!

 

I’m from the era of the $100 sneaker. When I came of age Jordan’s were first making there debut. Charles Barkley’s came out. Reebok Pumps, The David Robinson Nike pumps, Nike Air Flights, L.A. Gear catapults, Gore-Tex Boots, Beef and Broccolis etc.  I came up during the Avirex, Starter Jacket and 8 Ball jacket era. My brother and sister were older than me so certain stuff didn’t cost that much at the time. So my mother wasn’t used to paying that kind of money for stuff like that and she refused to do it. She would not do it. I remember one time I almost got her to do it and we got to the register and she was almost there and the cashier rang them up and as soon as she saw the tax added she said nah you know what I cant do it. I’m not paying $100 for sneakers unless you can guarantee me that you will run faster or jump higher and land an NBA contract because of these sneakers. If you can guarantee me that these sneakers will get you into the NBA then I will buy them. If not, I’m not buying no kid no $100 sneakers. My obligation is to buy you sneakers, not $100 sneakers. She said I will pay what I would have paid for your brothers sneakers, which is $50 and that’s pushing it. She said “Now, I will buy you $50 sneakers OR if you are foolish enough to still want $100+ sneakers I will give you the $50 and you can go EARN the rest of the money yourself and buy yourself $100 sneakers if you want them” Boy was I mad. I was just a kid and my friends had Jordan’s and Air Flights and all of the fancy sneakers and coats and I wanted them too. So I wasn’t going out with no $50 sneakers. I had to have Jordan’s too. This was my first experience with having a BURNING DESIRE for something and setting a personal goal. All I knew was that I just had to have those sneakers. So, I hustled, I raked leaves, I shoveled snow, I babysat, I bought cans of soda from the store for 50 cents and took them to school and sold them for  $1 I took my profits and gambled with them and doubled and tripled and quadrupled my profits. I did whatever I had to do to fulfill my DESIRE and meet my GOAL. But, when I achieved my goal, the most amazing thing happened. Over the years my DESIRE and goal to get some sneakers and clothes and jackets grew bigger and bigger. After I hustled and got the money up for my sneakers and clothes and stuff, my desire and goal to get some clothes and sneakers grew.  Suddenly my desire and my goals were to get a car and I hustled and achieved my goal and got one. Then It grew into a desire and a goal for a better car one and I got it.  My desire for a car grew into a desire and a goal to buy a house and I worked and hustled and got dirty and got one. But then it grew into desire and a goal for a bigger house with a big yard and land. That desire grew into a goal of me wanting to stack a decent amount of cash up, which in turn led to me having a goal of leaving this earth with a bare minimum of a $250,000,000 net worth. Which then morphed into a desire and a goal to motivate and inspire and encourage as many people in the world as I possibly could to set and achieve their own personal goals as well.
 
Ever since the day my mother told me NO, I’M NOT BUYING YOU $100 SNEAKERS, it let me know that as long as someone else is controlling the purse strings and as long as I am depending on someone else, “NO” would always be a possibility. But, more importantly she let me know that IF I WANTED SOMETHING BAD ENOUGH, I ALWAYS HAVE THE OPTION OF GOING OUT AND DOING WHAT IT TOOK TO MAKE IT POSSIBLE FOR MYSELF. SHE DIDN’T SAY NO YOU CANT HAVE $100 SNEAKERS. SHE SAID NO, I’M NOT BUYING THEM FOR YOU. IF YOU ARE FOOLISH ENOUGH TO WANT THEM, YOU WILL NEED TO GO OUT AND GET THEM YOURSELF. That was all I needed to hear was that it was possible!
 
I was pissed off when I was  a little kid, I was like what you mean you wont buy them for me my friends parents are buying them. She said well go ask your friends parents to buy you a pair too, because I’m not. Now that I am older, I am so grateful and happy and thankful that she told me no. Perhaps If she would have given them to me she could have possibly completely killed my desire thereby killing my hunger and drive and determination to GO GET THEM MYSELF. I would have never learned the hustle, I would have never learned about grit, determination, ambition, drive, focus etc. I would have never learned the value of hard work, or strong work ethic. I might have ended up thinking that everything in life is supposed to just come to me. I might have grown up with a sense of entitlement. Without her lesson I might have grown up thinking that I am just entitled to stuff and don’t have to work for it. Ironically one of the best things my mother ever did for me was to not do something for me. She forced me to set a goal and when I accomplished it, it gave me the confidence to set a bigger one and a bigger one and a bigger one etc.  I LEARNED THAT “NO” IS NOT A STOP SIGN, IT IS JUST A DETOUR SIGN THAT SAYS YOU MUST GO ABOUT YOUR GOAL ANOTHER WAY!
 
I guess my point or the moral of the story is in looking back over my life, I have learned to be grateful and thankful for the “No’s” the rejections the adversities, the foreclosure notices and eviction notices and repossession notices of the past, the past due bills of the past, the jobs I wanted and applied for but didn’t get. I have learned to be eternally grateful and appreciative for all of the people in my life who supported and encouraged me and helped and pushed me to pursue my dreams, because they made me who I am. I have also learned to be eternally grateful and appreciate all of the people who discouraged me and laughed at me and told me that my dreams were impossible and everybody who did me dirty over the years because they made me who I am.
 
Whatever your goal or objective is in life, whatever you are looking to accomplish THE ONLY PERSON WHO CAN STOP YOU IS YOU. All you have to do is want something bad enough, work and keep a positive attitude and THE WORLD IS YOURS! Set a goal, achieve it and set another one! Just try to keep in mind that……
 
 
“Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”
 
“The biggest hurdle is rejection. Any business you start, be ready for it. The difference between successful people and unsuccessful people is the successful people do all the things the unsuccessful people don’t want to do. When 10 doors are slammed in your face, go to door number 11 enthusiastically, with a smile on your face.”
-John Paul DeJoria
“My motto was always to keep swinging. Whether I was in a slump or feeling badly or having trouble off the field, the only thing to do was keep swinging.”

-Hank Aaron
There is in this world no such force as the force of a person determined to rise. The human soul cannot be permanently chained.

-W.E.B. Dubois
 
THE WORLD IS OURS!
 
Thanks ma! I love you!
 
PEACE!

 

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THE BEST YOU!

I got in the financial services/stock game many years ago. The job was to call people and sell investment ideas/strategies over the telephone. I got in the game with a bunch of young black entrepreneurial spirited, determined, driven focused men who were either from or lived or existed in the “hood” at one time or another. We were making our way in a business that was made up of mostly white men. The clients we dealt with were mostly white men, the majority of the brokers I have ever worked with were white men etc. There was this ideology that we seemed to have that if these rich millionaire white men knew that we were young black men from the “hood” calling them about stocks and doing big business, they wouldn’t want to deal with us since this was a “white mans business”. So we did everything in our power to make sure that we sounded like what we thought polished young white men sounded like. Eventually the group that I started with split and went separate ways. I ended up going to other firms and even in other places I was the only black broker in the building. So I carried on trying to maintain my “Whitest” voice possible. It was a terrible feeling that I walked around with. I walked around thinking that in order to be successful, I had to speak like and pretend to be someone other than myself. What kind of business am I in where in order to be successful, I have to pretend to be something that I am not. But, I kept on pretending and kept on moving forward In the business. I was 22 years old, I was just a kid and hadn’t realized that there was a difference between sounding like a professional black man and a white man.

Until, one day I applied for a job at a bigger more well named firm and I was called for an interview. I was going in to interview with the branch manager of the firm. When I got into the interview, lo and behold the branch manager was a young black man. Finally I could be myself (I think, unless he was also one of the black guys who thought he needed to be “white” too). We begin the interview and this guy is speaking to me like a professional black man and not a “white man”. We interview, and I get the job and I begin work. This is great but, small problem, this was my first job in the brokerage industry where I will be meeting clients face to face. How can I pretend to be something other than myself now? There is no way I can convince these clients on the other side of my desk who are looking right at me and shaking my hand that I am white. Now, what do I do? Since I was in the habit already whenever I made calls I had my “white” voice on and everyone in the office would laugh at me and ask why I’m talking like that. My manager explained to me that you cant run from yourself anymore, he told me that I just have to be myself. But in being yourself you have to be the best you. You have to know your business, know your product, know your customer and offer extraordinary service. He asked me HOW LONG DO YOU THINK YOU CAN YOU KEEP UP THE ACT OF BEING SOMEONE ELSE? There is nothing wrong with you being yourself, YOU JUST NEED TO BE THE BEST YOU, THAT YOU CAN BE!   I took my managers advice and I learned the game, learned the business, learned the products and tools and solutions that I would need to sell, I learned the customers. I learned how to create value etc. Some time went by and suddenly these millionaire clients that I was once concerned about finding out who I really was started asking to take me to lunch and dinner and wanted to hang out with me and stuff. These same people that I was so concerned about hiding from and these same customers who once made me doubt myself were now telling me how great I was. They acted like they even wanted to be my friend. I would ask them all for tips and advice on becoming a millionaire and secrets to their success and they would tell me and even mentor me.  I learned that the race issue that I had made such a big deal of and that I was so concerned with was more so in my head than anything else. Along the way I have encountered some blatant and overt racism from customers who were overtly and blatantly racist who made no apologies for being racist, who didn’t care how good I was or how well I knew my stuff, they just didn’t want anything to do with me, but they were very few and far between. The majority of the people were more concerned with how competent I was, they were more concerned with how good I was at my job, they were more concerned with my ability to help them and my ability to represent some sort of value to them, than they were the color of my skin or what city or neighborhood I was from. I HAVE LEARNED THAT TO BE THE BEST, ALL I HAVE TO DO IS BE MYSELF! I WOULD RATHER BE BAD AT BEING MYSELF THAN I WOULD BEING GOOD AT PLAYING SOMEONE ELSE!

I guess my point is that whatever line of work you may be in, or looking to get into, be it Real Estate, financial services or you want to be a teacher, lawyer, chef, nurse, barber, beautician, writer, actor, dancer, singer, rapper, poet, photographer, personal trainer etc. Whatever you are looking to do, if you have any doubts about yourself, if you feel like something about you just isn’t good enough to become what you want to become and accomplish what you want to accomplish and achieve what you want to achieve YOU ARE WRONG! If you feel like you need to be someone other than yourself to succeed, YOU ARE WRONG! You do not have to be anything other than yourself to succeed. YOU JUST HAVE TO BE THE BEST YOU THAT YOU CAN POSSIBLY BE. YOU must learn YOUR business and study and master YOUR craft, learn how to create value. Instead of focusing on the little things that might be wrong, focus on and utilize and sharpen the hundred things that you do well.  The little thing that you are self conscious about is most likely all in your head and you are most likely making a bigger deal of it than anyone else will. Please don’t let mental hurdles stop you from pursuing your dreams or accomplishing and achieving your goals. YOU ARE GOOD ENOUGH AND YOU HAVE WHAT IT TAKES TO TURN YOUR DREAMS INTO REALITY.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.
-Steve Jobs

It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for something you are not.
-Andre Gide

We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.
-Kurt Vonnegut

I learned this, at least, by my experiment; that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
-Henry D. Thoreau

BE YOUR(BEST)SELF! I promise you that YOU are good enough!

PEACE!


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LIFETIME WARRANTY

 

I wonder if you took your brand new car which was under warranty and you drove it out into the river because you wanted to see if it would also function as a submarine, and your car sinks to the bottom of the ocean. You get a tow truck to pull it out, you try to start the car and the car no longer starts. You march right to that dealer and you tell the dealer your story and that you tried to use the car as a submarine and drove it into the river, the car wont start now and since the car is still under warranty and you need a new car or your money back now! What do you think the dealer would say? After he busts out laughing he is going to most likely say “I cant help you because the warranty applies to the car WHEN IT IS BEING USED FOR ITS PURPOSE! IF YOU WERE USING IT FOR ITS PURPOSE, THEN THE WARRANTY WOULD APPLY!

I started thinking recently that we as humans come with warranties also. I mean we have heard this stuff all of our lives. Stuff like….

When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hang on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.

-Harriet Beecher Stowe
 
Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough.
-Og Mandino
Do not wait; the time will never be ‘just right.’ Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along.
-George Herbert
 
I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion
-Muhammad Ali


WHATEVER THE MIND CAN CONCEIVE AND BELIEVE, THE MIND CAN ACHIEVE!” -Napoleon Hill –

I mean we hear and we read all of this stuff, and we go to our jobs and we work hard day in and day out and we sit and we wait for these wonderful and amazing things and we wait for this success stuff to happen for us in our lives, and we sit and we wait and we wait. But, after all of the waiting, we get nothing, no success, none of the promises that we are given under these warranties and we wonder why. I mean we are working and we are struggling and we start to wonder why aren’t any of these great things happening for me. Well, I would imagine that just like the warranty on the car, these warranties on our lives will only apply if WE ARE USING OUR LIVES FOR THEIR PURPOSES!

If you are or aspiring to be an entrepreneur, writer, singer, dancer, rapper, poet, fashion designer, poet, athlete, doctor, lawyer, writer, motivational speaker, nurse, graphic designer, barber, beautician pastor etc and you are striving to live out what you believe to be the purpose for your life and you are striving to fulfill what you believe or KNOW to be the purpose of your life DO NOT WORRY, DO NOT FRET OR CONCERN YOURSELF OVER WHETHER YOU WILL SUCCEED OR NOT. AS LONG AS YOU ARE STRIVING TO LIVE OUT YOUR PURPOSE, AS LONG AS YOUR LIFE IS BEING USED FOR ITS PURPOSE, YOUR SUCCESS IS COVERED UNDER YOUR LIFE’S WARRANTY!

KEEP  DREAMING, KEEP BELIEVING, KEEP WORKING, KEEP A POSITIVE ATTITUDE, KEEP MOVING FORWARD AND KEEP ENCOURAGING OTHERS TO DO THE SAME, and as clearly stated in paragraph 2, Section 4.6 sub chapter 2.C of our life warranty……

IF ONE ADVANCES CONFIDENTLY IN THE DIRECTION OF HIS DREAMS, AND ENDEAVORS TO LIVE THE LIFE WHICH HE HAS IMAGINED, HE WILL MEET WITH A SUCCESS UNEXPECTED IN COMMON HOURS!
-Henry David Thoreau

LIVE YOUR DREAMS!

THAT’S AN ORDER!

PEACE!

 

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WE WILL PERSIST!

One of the greatest lessons that I have ever learned from all of my years being in the Financial services industry is the concept of Unrealized and Realized gains and losses. Its a simple concept but so important and applicable to life and business. The concept is simple.

 
Let’s say you buy a stock at a cost of $10 per share. a few weeks go by and the price of the stock drops to $8. A few more weeks go by and the stock goes down to $7 and then $4 per share. As long as you continue to hold on to the stock, until you sell that stock, the loss isn’t real yet it is called an unrealized loss. Because as long as you are still holding on to the stock, the stock could very well jump back up to $15 $20 $50 per share the very next day and be worth double triple quadruple what it was worth when you originally bought it.

So any loss that you encounter doesn’t become a real loss until you have given up or no longer believe in the stock and you sell it. When you sell the stock it is called a realized loss and at the point when you sell that stock (give up) that’s when you have actually taken a real loss, because now that the stock has been sold and by selling the stock you have eliminated any possibility of the stock coming back!

I guess the whole point in me saying all of this is that stocks like life are governed by unseen forces. So we never know what wonderful and amazing things are possible and around the corner waiting in store for us if we just continue to hold on. Its been my experience that when stocks go down in value people sell them out of fear. They sell them because they have lost the faith and belief and confidence that they once had in the stock. I have found that people give up on themselves and their dreams when they are in fear of the future. When they no longer have the faith and confidence in themselves that they once had. So they give up on themselves and their dreams all together. But when you give up you have made your loss real and you have eliminated the possibility of your situation ever coming back or improving.  

 
If you have suffered any loss or setback at all, loss of a job or income, a financial loss due to a failed business, loss of a spouse due to divorce, lost your house or apartment or car etc. THE LOSS IS NOT REAL UNTIL YOU HAVE GIVEN UP. IF YOU KEEP FIGHTING AND KEEP GRINDING ANOTHER JOB IS RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER, A FEW TWEAKS TO YOUR BUSINESS AND IT CAN/WILL BE PROFITABLE OR A NEW BUSINESS IDEA WILL COME TO YOU! YOU WILL GET BACK ON YOUR FEET AND GET A NEW, BIGGER, BETTER HOUSE CAR OR APARTMENT ETC. YOUR MARRIAGE CAN/WILL WORK IF YOU KEEP WORKING FOR IT! ALL OF THESE THINGS ARE POSSIBLE UNTIL YOU GIVE UP. ONCE YOU GIVE UP, YOU ADMIT DEFEAT! YOU REALIZE AND SOLIDIFY YOUR LOSS AND THINGS WILL NEVER GET ANY BETTER!
 
If you are currently going through hard times with health issues, financial issues, family issues, can’t find a job etc. if you are experiencing something that feels like you are losing in life. Just remember that that loss is not final, it’s not a real loss, until you quit/let go/ give up. The second you decide to quit, your loss is now real and final and you have eliminated all of the possibilities of wonderful and amazing things happening for you or your situation.

IF YOU ARE GOING THROUGH SOME TOUGH OR DIFFICULT TIMES, THEY HAVE NOT COME TO STAY, THEY HAVE ONLY COME TO PASS!

 
TOUGH TIMES NEVER LAST! BUT, TOUGH PEOPLE DO!
 
We will persist until you succeed.
        

We will never consider defeat and we will remove from our vocabulary such words and phrases as quit, cannot, unable, impossible, out of the question, improbable, failure, unworkable, hopeless, and retreat; for they are the words of fools. We will avoid despair but if this disease of the mind should infect us then we will work on in despair. We will toil and we will endure. We will ignore the obstacles at our feet and keep our eyes on the goals above our head, for we know that where dry desert ends, green grass grows.         

-Og Mandino 

WE WILL PERSIST UNTIL WE SUCCEED.

KEEP YOUR DUKES UP!

THE WORLD IS OURS!

PEACE!

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WALK OF LIFE!

Sometimes when  the weather is nicer and its warm outside, My wife and I will take a walk through the neighborhood or we will walk/jog around the track at the local high school. I noticed that If I have something to do or someplace that I need to be later on that night, I will tend to walk or jog a little faster and my wife will kind of lag behind. Or If she has something to do or someplace to be later on or if one of her favorite TV shows are coming on that night that she wants to make it home in time for, than she will jog/walk at a faster pace and I will lag behind.  But, since we go out walking/jogging TOGETHER we try to stay with one another and not leave each other. So depending on who feels that their agenda is more important (If I have something really really important to do or if she has something important to do or really doesn’t want to miss her show), only one of two things can/will happen when we walk together. ONE OF US WILL EITHER HAVE TO SPEED UP TO MATCH THE PACE AND CATCH UP WITH THE OTHER THAT IS AHEAD, OR THE ONE OF US THAT IS AHEAD WILL HAVE TO SLOW DOWN TO MATCH THE PACE OF THE ONE WHO IS FALLING BEHIND. Whether either of us slows down or speeds is determined by our agenda and what our plans and goals are for the future. If either of us have something really important to do or someplace to be and we are really focused on what we have to do in the future, than we aren’t going to slow down. The other person is going to have to speed up to catch up and keep pace.

I guess my point is if you have goals, or an agenda, or a plan for your future exercise caution when you decide who you choose to “Walk/Run” with.  Be careful of the people who you choose to spend a lot of time with. Be careful about the people who you choose to exchange and share energy with and have in your world. Be careful who you choose to take your “walk of life” with. Because if you are ambitious and focused and determined and you have a plan for your future and goals and objectives that you are looking to achieve, if the person you choose to “Walk/Run” with, has no plan or goals or agenda and they are just “walking” and you are out front making progress and making strides and making things happen for yourself. Only one of two things can happen, the person/people that you have decided to “Run/Walk” through life with will either have to step their game and their pace up in order to catch up with and maintain pace with you or you are going to have to slow your pace down and perhaps put off or delay the achievement or fulfillment of your dreams and goals and ambitions in order to keep pace with them.

When it comes to accomplishing and achieving our goals and objectives in life I think it would be advantageous to us if we ran with and in the same direction as others who are and have already been running in the same direction that we are looking to go in. I think we increase our chances of success if we ran with like minded people who will constantly encourage us to keep moving forward by constantly trying to move forward themselves and forcing us to keep. I once read that you will rise or fall to the level of your associations. Dare to hang around and spend time with people who challenge and encourage and push you to your greatness and those who you can learn from, not those who hold you back.

I encourage you to KEEP GROWING, KEEP DREAMING, KEEP WORKING, KEEP ACHIEVING, KEEP WALKING TOWARDS YOUR GOALS AND KEEP PEOPLE IN YOUR LIFE WHO WILL ENCOURAGE YOU AND THAT YOU CAN LEARN FROM.

“IF YOU ARE THE SMARTEST ONE OF YOUR FRIENDS, YOU MAY WANT TO LOOK INTO GETTING SOME NEW FRIENDS”
-Dennis Kimbro

“SHOW ME YOUR FRIENDS, AND I WILL TELL YOU YOUR FUTURE”
Unknown

“HE WHO HANGS OUT WITH WOLVES, WILL EVENTUALLY LEARN HOW TO HOWL”
-Unknown

ASSOCIATE YOURSELF WITH PEOPLE OF GOOD QUALITY, FOR IT IS BETTER TO BE ALONE THAN IN BAD COMPANY”
Booker T. Washington
 
Etc Etc Etc!
 
YOU GET THE POINT!
 
LIVE YOUR DREAMS!
 
THATS AN ORDER!
 
PEACE!
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