MAKING GOOD MONEY: HOW COME PEOPLE DON’T HAVE A MORE DECLARATIVE CAREER EXPLANATION

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“We all want it, but what is good money?”


Ever hear people who are either unemployed or looking for work while on a job say they want to make good money. What exactly is a good job or good money? We all have a different perspective on what that means, but no one can define it in an entirety. So when I hear people say they need a “job” making “good” money I pause. For me, I am currently pursuing my goals of becoming a successful writer (screenplays, playwrights, novels, and blogger), filmmaker, photographer, and podcaster. I would like to make at least $60,000 per year as a start to work for myself. I have given myself 10 years to break into my career as a writer/filmmaker. I am currently at year five almost six. And there you have it, a nice basic understanding for what my goals are in a career. But I always hear these very vague ideas of what it is that people want from life.

I said in an earlier post that adults who need jobs are like crying babies. You can’t communicate with a baby when it’s crying because the baby can’t talk. Only problem with adults is that we can talk. And unlike the baby where you have to give the baby milk, rock the baby, and do all these activities to guess the problem, it’s not the case with adults. A fully grown adult should know more than a baby their problem that is bothering them. And that is the problem with the I need a good paying job inquiry. What job? Paying what? What time period to get to that point? What is your level of expertise? Is this something you really enjoy doing? Do you have the stomach to build in your career choice? So many people don’t know the answers to any of these questions because they lack self-awareness. And that is the main problem.

Because when trying to look for employment, you have to first acknowledge the skills you possess. You can’t just say I need a job and expect people to know your skills. I know what I am good at in this world. It’s not my job to know your strengths and weaknesses. It’s not my job to give you a certain level of skills. Your job is to show me what it is you can do. That is what I mean by self awareness. By a certain age, you should have some level of degree to which you know your skills. That’s why the whole find a job, get a job is very vague. If I realized that my skill is writing, then I am going to pursue my writing career. If there are other skills I have, I’ll pursue those as well. You should pursue whatever you find that is a skill of yours that you not only love, but in the long term can make an income performing.

In the end, not having a firm understanding of who you are is going to be the defining outcome. If you don’t know what you are good at then who does. It’s your brain, you know what your mind wraps around. And if your mind does not wrap around the concept of anything, you’re not going to be hired even if someone was offering jobs. You should know to some degree what career title you want, income associated, and years to rise to another position. And it all comes together in knowing how to put yourself in the know of whatever it is you want to do in life.


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BREAKING FREE: MOVING AWAY TO GROW

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“Get away to grow up.”


In the year 2011, right after undergraduate school, I moved to New York City. Coming here for graduate school from Kenosha, Wisconsin was a new experience. You go from living on a rural campus to a major metropolitan hub. Yet graduate school wasn’t the only reason I decided to make the leap out on the East Coast. Another reason I chose to move to the East was because I needed to also be in a city where I could pursue my goals the best way I knew how to do so. And I also wanted to shape my identification. Growing up for me in a household where I was not only the only boy among siblings, but male in the house. And there are certain aspects of being a man that my mom and sisters don’t quite understand. So in my mind, it made perfect sense to create a whole new identity for myself and pursue my goals.

So I ask you, is there ever a moment in your life where feel you need to getaway to grow in life. Now don’t get me wrong, you are suppose to leave an environment in search of something better. Not run away from problems that you perceive to be external, but are really internal. Because internal problems only follow you wherever you go. I am referring to you having to leave because what the world has to offer you elsewhere is far too great to stay where you currently reside. And that could mean better schools, a better job, and overall better existence. For example, I come from a small city with a population of about 75,000 people. And now living in New York city, there are three to four times that many people in my Harlem neighborhood. So it has been a major leap in me getting acclimated to the city. But luckily for me, I have been here almost six years.

As for me taking the leap and living in a more open and conscious city, my mind has grown with it. So my writing has improved since leaving my small town. Now, does that mean I encourage everyone else to do the same; no. I just feel for me, the borough of Manhattan has an energy that inspires me to write everyday. Some days I will just walk around the high populated areas just to get in a mode and come back to the computer lab and write. So for you, a small town might be the place for you to push out the greatness that is inside of you. But moving away gives you a different perspective on how other people live their lives. You are given an open door into how others different from you think and feel. This may aid in your endeavors whatever they may be, to propel yourself forward in life.

In the end, moving away forces you to mature at a quicker rate than if you were at home. Because even  with a support system back home, you have to step up to the learning curve quick. For me, coming from small town Midwest and now in the Big Apple, you grow fast. If you don’t, you sink fast. The city will swallow you up and spit you out. And it is a true testament to how resilient you are in life.


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WHERE DO YOU GO FROM HERE: THE REALIZATION YOU’RE NO LONGER IN SCHOOL

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“I just finished, now what do I do?”


You have worked from elementary school, through middle school, and coming through high school. You worked tirelessly to plan for college, you get accepted, and get into college. You go through college, and might even go through grad school. But now that you have completed school, or at least your formidable education, what now. Today, I am seeing so many students go back to school today. But what about the students who are no longer in school? What are they to do now? You graduated over the weekend, but there is no change to your life. You’re the same person you were before graduating. There is not this new physical form your body takes on now that you have graduated. What is the first move to make? What direction should you take in life? Are you sure you still want to do what you set out to do?

And that is when life sets in; you are on your own. You were told that the key to success in life is attaining a good education. But here you are Monday morning, working your job you once had, without anything special formulating in your life. Because for starters, attaining an education is more than just going to school. There is a lot of self-education in becoming successful in a career. Going to college alone is not enough to pull yourself up in life. You have to be willing to put yourself in the know of whatever it is you’re seeking to attain. I heard hip hop artist 50 Cent make a statement about school. He said, “If everything you needed to know about business were in those textbooks, the professor wouldn’t be teaching you.” “He’d be out generating wealth himself.” Now that’s not to say that the professor hates his job. It’s aiming at understanding taking full advantage of opportunities in front of you.

Basically what I am saying is that no one is going to teach you in society how to win. Why, well there isn’t a course you can teach, nor is there a conversation you can have, that is going to make you successful. It’s about working smart, consistent, planning, preparation, a little luck, and persistence. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, years of arduous and tedious work. It’s almost as if you have to kind of toss out some of the principles you were taught in school in regards to building a career. Because since it comes from your work ethic, there are things you can’t learn in school. There should be life courses in college that expose you to real world scenarios. Scenarios like real competition, failures, success, and building. But to the university, that is your job to build your own life, they just provide you with a basic template for life.

And in the end, that is the job of the collegiate institutions. Giving you the basics of what you have in store for you in life ahead. To you, you might think to yourself, $40,000 – $50,000 per  year does not sound basic. But that in itself is futile compared to the grand scheme of what life really cost. So to all who have graduated this year and are now in the real world, good luck grinding. Because there is no life book or class for the road ahead. Put yourself in the game, and take risk. Put yourself in harms way. (figuratively speaking)


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THE WORLD OWES YOU NOTHING: WHY YOUR LIFE IS UP TO YOU

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“Your life: whatever comes of it is up to you.”


You want  something in life, you go for it. No one is going to give it to you and won’t care if you ever have it. So it’s your job to go into the world and make your own luck. Now, I could sit here and go through all the stories of how some people have it hard. Yet when it’s all said and done, everyone has something on their plate. And the world is just not interested in caring about whatever it is you’re going through in life. So where does that leave people who don’t have direction? It leaves them with their hands in the air. Because as an adult, you have to figure your life out.

Hey, easier said than done right? Well, in so many cases it’s actually wrong. I am in my late 20’s; actually I should just say thirty years of age by now. And I watch people my age go to the clubs and enjoy their lives. Yet I sit inside of a computer lab, typing away. Trying to come up with my next blog topic, my next screenplay idea, my next book, or my next anything that will make me a better writer. Meanwhile, so many guys my age do nothing. I don’t understand it, I just don’t. To me, my life is not moving as fast as I thought it would. So, in the moment, I feel like I am being just as unproductive as them. My life could turn out to be a dud just like the guy who sits around and does nothing.

And what’s scary, is that I could never achieve anything remotely close to the success I want in life. But that’s just life; there is no guarantee of making a living in society. I could put my life into my work and fail. But so many can’t stomach the idea of putting their all into something and it not pan out. They expect something to happen. They might ask, “How much time should I dedicate to doing this or that?” Or they’ll say, “So if I do everything you just said will it make me successful?” And real answer is, who knows. You have no clue what might transpire, but that’s actually what’s good about this roller coaster ride we call life. You might not even try that hard and win, or work your ass off and lose. There is no guarantee and no one owes you anything.

Because in the end, your life is whatever you make it. No one has to make things happen for you, that’s your job. Yes, there may be people who give you an opportunity along the way, but it’s not owed to you. You take it for what it’s worth and keep going. Because win or lose, your success in life will ultimately come down to how much you have prepared. And for those that haven’t prepared, it will show in their lives.


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FROM SUCCESS COMES GUILT: WHY DO PEOPLE FEEL DOWN ABOUT THEIR SUCCESS

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“I’m winning, but do I deserve it?”


You’re young, successful, and life couldn’t be any better. As a matter of fact, life is so good, you often feel like why are you coasting so easily. Now what’s interesting about that statement is that you built yourself to where you are in life. Yet when you look at your life, you have given so much to be where you’re at. Why are you feeling this weird sense of guilt, or undeserving feeling of you getting what you have today? It’s because when you see how the dynamics of how the world actually is built, you think to yourself, “How the hell did I get here?” But most of all, you’re seeing people around you work so hard, yet go nowhere.

Now, I also look at where you have come from as it pertains to your socioeconomic situation. If you grew up poor, and now you’re upper middle class, then you go back home and see poor people. People you know very well are hard working people. They’re not lazy, they’re not bulking the system, so why are they struggling and I am not? Why does it seem like money is coming to me so easily and they struggle to survive? You sit on the lakefront overlooking the landscape with your 5,000; 6,000; or 7,000 square foot house in the background. You look around and say to yourself, “Why me?”

But then you have to snap back to your senses and say, “Why not me?” Especially if you came from humble beginnings, you deserve to have what’s coming to you. But it’s sometimes more than just that in life. Sometimes, some of us are blessed with the ability to retain more knowledge, or just born with more knowledge. And that would mean you hit the genetic lottery. You are of the few that are able to use your mind to move yourself to another level. The things to some people that make no sense, flow through your mind perfectly. Now most would say, “Why don’t you share that knowledge?” And you do, hence, why you have so many people who struggle. Not because you shared your knowledge of success, but because how some of them receive the information.

You might share how you made it, and they ignore, or discredit what you’re saying. So it becomes tough to share with people sometimes because they have this disconnect that causing them to not want to accept the truth. Yet, you are of rational mind. So when two people of rational mind talk, yet only one can accept the rationale, then you have a disconnect. And in the end, that is why you shouldn’t feel hurt by where you are in life. Life is all about choices. Choices to listen, to work, to enjoy your life, and to part take in activities you shouldn’t do. And you should never feel like where you have come is some kind of mistake. Because there is always someone feeling and living worse off than you; so live life and enjoy.


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MINDLESS MINDFRAME: HOW LEAVING YOUR SMALL TOWN MAY BE FOR THE BEST

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“When you think big and they think small.”


Do you come from a small city or town? Are the people where this place exist carry a certain mind frame that causes you to disconnect from them? Me myself, I come from one of these type of places. The city is a place you probably never heard of, and a population of only 78,000 people. A lot of the younger generation continues to still move away. And the population is still continuing to fall as time progress. Well, why is that? Why are the people leaving this seemingly quiet town. Well, first and foremost, the jobs have left. What was once a thriving Midwest manufacturing city has been reduced to vacant factory buildings. But another reason is because of the thought process of the people.

You probably ask, what makes it tough to live in some of these types of places. For starters, people have a hard time seeing past their current situation. To them, this is it, and there is nothing past this. And not just in a negative I am a failure way. But also in a manner where whatever is the well-known organization to work for, people flock to it like it’s working for Goldman Sachs. People walk around like this place to work for is the greatest and if you can’t get a job here, you must not be worth hiring. It’s like, “I’m a supervisor over at this place.” It’s about levels, as with anywhere else in society. Yet the level is not a real level. They are sharks in a pond, but when but in a bigger city, they become clown fish in the ocean. But what is another reason to leave your small city/town?

Another is how people look at the world as it pertains to the social landscape. I was walking down the street here in New York City, and a guy had on a baseball cap. The logo was of the Confederate Flag, and in addition he sported some sunglasses. And judging by the way he was carrying himself, he thought he was making a statement. Almost as if he wanted to say, “All these others are afraid to express themselves.” “But I’m going to be me in this overly liberal environment.” And sense the language is so sensitive, he thought people would react. Because he probably watched protest in NYC on television and figured he’d express himself. Yet no one told him on a daily basis that no one pays much attention to you. But his lack of knowledge made him look like a loser in his hat. Because he just watched TV like Fox News or CNN, and that’s how he based his perception of a liberal city.

Other reasons you have to make moves from these places is because few people have a sense of vision. People look at you and say, “No one from this small town is doing that.” And if you attempt, people will try to bring you down so you have to leave. They will be afraid of your progress surpassing them. And they think they know you because whatever family you came from as well. Kind of like, “Oh, that’s so and so’s kid.” “I been knowing his family, they up to no good, he must be as well.” So you have to go to a city where no one knows or think they know your family. This way you can start from scratch and represent yourself. And in the end, that’s the just of moving. There is a mind frame that people define as comfortable, which keeps them from growing and you as well if you stay. But lastly, don’t move elsewhere thinking your life will change. Because you have to think different yourself.


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NOT QUITE THERE YET: ARE YOU NOT IN THE PLACE YOU WANT TO BE IN LIFE

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“The long arduous path that is success.”


Have you ever had the feeling like you’re not in the place you want to be in life? Like you should be or thought you would be a lot farther by this point? Well, I am about to turn thirty years of age and I am working toward a career as a writer. While working toward this career, I am working two part-time jobs. And that sounds fine when you are a twenty years old, but not when you are thirty. Because when you are thirty, you are supposed to be a certain place by this time. You should be on your way to finding your first starter home and thinking about children, not writing. But I am pursuing a career I love, rather than a job I have to go to everyday.

So here I sit, in this moment writing. And to cope with the long road to writing success, I try to observe those that started around my age. And you see they had their first success at about mid to late thirties. Now I gave myself a ten year time period to break in as a successful writer of screenplays, playwright, and novels; with a little lightweight film/theatre directing. Now that I have gotten myself out of the way, what are you pursuing that your life isn’t where you thought it would be? We have all these visions when we are children of the things we will do as adults. But when we become adults, everything is up in the air once you are in the world on your own.

And everything is really up in the air if you have no clue what you want to do with your life. You typically spend all your time working, then coming home and existing. So the days turn into weeks, then weeks to months, and months to years. And before you know it, life has past them by, and they have not attempted at anything in life. And that is the scary feeling people have of not quite being there yet. They even see people their age making life decisions, going in the right direction. Yet they are still not there themselves. So they find any reason to avoid people they know out of shame. Why, well because we always compare ourselves to people that are around our age.

But what happens once people younger than yourself start making moves in life beyond you. That’s when you really start to feel uncomfortable. Seeing a new younger generation making moves that you feel you have not made yet. And what’s crazy, that young age group will feel the same once they reach my age. See, in the end, we don’t want to live with the failures. But we also don’t want to live with the idea of people saying I told you so. Trying at something and constantly failing at it over and over again. But I remember reading a quote by Thomas Edison which stated, “Many of life’s failures didn’t realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” But the real question is, how do you know when you’re close?


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