We as people experience and learn many things as we go through our childhood, enter our adolescent years, and journey into adulthood. Some things are more important than others as we take things and allow others to go in one ear and out the other. There are things that we keep with us and we use for the rest of our lives – mantras I call them. So ladies and gents, let’s chop it up as I share some of the lessons I’ve learned and would like to share.
1. Be an owner, not a loaner
Plain and simple everyone wants to have their own and cherish what they have through hard work – money especially. Own it, don’t loan it. There is nothing wrong with helping out a friend in need, but don’t get in the habit of giving handouts.
If you have your own house, you’re an owner (even if you’re not fortunate to buy it outright and still owe money to the bank, it’s yours). If you rent, you’re pretty much a loaner in a sense. You’re giving the landlord your hard-earned money to pay off his own debt just to live under his roof.
2. Trust in God
Or whomever you may believe in. I’m not here to preach to the masses but He is good all the time. When things are going well you must praise Him and thank Him for the blessings He’s given. And when you’re down, pray that He gives you the strength to deal with the things that you can’t deal with on your own. Remember, He may not be there when you call, but He’s always on time.
3. Believe half of what you see, none of what you hear
People talk all the time. Whether it’s the news you see on television, news on the radio or just plain gossip amongst people. Too many things go on in life especially among our young brothers and sisters engulfed in all the “he said, she said” garbage. I feel like this: believe NONE of it.
We all know there’s always another side to the story, and we’re all familiar with the famous cliché’, “Misery loves company”. Make sure you find out all information before going on someone else s premise.
As far as seeing things,…well things aren’t always what they appear to be. If you see someone doing something they shouldn’t be doing, I guess it is what it is. However, in the end there’s always more than meets the eye.
4. Pay your bills on time
This is pretty self-explanatory. When you get a bill in the mail, take care of it. I don’t care if you pay it online, in the mail, or over the phone. I don’t care if you use check, cash, or money order. No matter how high it is if you have the money just close your eyes and take care of it.
Paying your bills on time is extremely important based on the fact that your bills can double or triple, and you’ll have an even harder time paying it then. I won’t even get into the fact that it can wreak havoc on your credit, and debt collectors blow up your phone worse than a man/woman you meet for the first time.
Ladies, think of this, it could be like that thirsty gentleman you gave some cutty to for the first time and won’t leave you alone. *I had to put that in there
5. Practice what you preach
To borrow from the old saying, “Keep it real” is an understatement. I get none of us are perfect but, if I’m telling you not to do something, than I damn sure better not be doing it myself. They’re too many people out there – namely athletes, celebrities, and even religious folks – who are exposed as hypocrites. They say don’t do xyz, but get caught up in the same thing themselves.
Bill Cosby has preached the importance of family values for years, especially among Black people. In 1997 he admitted to cheating on his wife of 33 years, not to mention the scandals that followed.
Steve Harvey preaches about being a man and the meaning behind being faithful. He calls himself empowering women and being a “man’s man”. And went as far as to write the book and be the driving force behind the movie “Think like a man”. However, he has fathered four children from three women and has divorced twice.
I was once privy to a story of a speaker from an anti-drug program actually buying marijuana from one of the students from the same school he spoke at. I can imagine the embarrassment that came after. The bottom line is: Say what you mean and mean what you say.
6. Family comes first
When you decide to give your life to a man or woman and start a family, things can and will change. A lot of brothas out there forget about this fact and think they’re still in college. Don’t get me wrong, having time with the fellas is a great thing. Hanging and catching up on old times is always cool. However, when you’re constantly out and about spending your money drinking, partying, or worse attempting to trick off, you’re being selfish and totally disregarding your family at home (not to mention disrespecting your woman).
It’s essential to be the provider and protector for your home. And ladies same for you; it’s cool to have ladies time but you don’t need to be out to the point where you know all the bouncers and bartenders. You’re acting like you’re still 21 or on spring break somewhere. At the end of the day your family is what comes first and will have your back. And there isn’t anything that can beat or replace that.
7. 40 isn’t the new 30 and 30 isn’t the new 20
You already had your time to be young, wild, and free and whether or not you took advantage of it,…well that is on you. Two words: Grow Up.
8. Don’t try to drink champagne on a beer budget
I know of people who make $35 – 40k a year and live better than people who make $80k. It’s all about living within your means and not trying to keep up with the Jones’. If you don’t have the money for it, don’t buy it. And there is nothing wrong with the clearance rack. A penny saved is a penny earned.
I totally understand the phrase,”‘work hard play hard” but there are times you gotta work hard and play easy, you simply have no choice. All in all, stay in your financial lane.
9. People always smile in your face and you’ll think everything is copacetic, but you’ll never know what’s truly in their heart.
This was said to me by a wise man. And these words couldn’t be any more true, no real need to explain here. Fake people are always the most dangerous.
10. “Show me your friends and I’ll tell you who YOU are”
Mind the company you keep. It’s important to be amongst people who are positive and will uplift and enrich you, your mind, body, and soul. Life is too short to waste it on people who really don’t care for or about you. In addition to that too many brothers and sisters have lost their lives inheriting their friends/acquaintance’s beef. It’s a sad reality but a true one.
Look at the word ‘friend’. What are the last three letters in friend?—“end”. That’s how long they should be there for, ’till the end. No man, woman,(of a sexual nature of course) money, or potential/supposed fame should come between you and them.
So readers you have taken a journey into my ideas of life’s rules, what are some of yours that you follow and/or have for others out there? Do tell.
Peace and God Bless