When did you start to forget how to fly?
I heard Chance the Rapper through the speakers as it sounded like he was talking directly to me. That poignant question is one that I feel so many of us neglect. As children, the possibilities are endless before our parents, the world, school and friends tells us everything we can’t be. Not on purpose, but sometimes just in their actions and so sometimes we forget that we can fly.
I am in awe of Chance the Rappers new project, Coloring Book. Like it’s really, really good. I am not sure I felt like this about a rap album since like College Dropout. And mostly it is because of the hope that I feel when I listen to it. I feel like there are important questions like “Are you ready for your blessings?” and important affirmations like “You got it, you got it, you got it, it’s coming,” all throughout. They may seem simple but as a writer, words are so intentional to me. There are so many things about the project that just make me feel like I can be better, do better, and achieve everything I have ever dreamed by doing it my way.
The project inspires hope which is one of the key things that you need in order to achieve anything. I have observed when people have lost hope, it’s one of the things that makes them extremely dangerous to society. The person who has nothing to hope for, has lost a part of their soul in my estimation. And that’s why it’s so important to create things that help those that may be discouraged, who may be looking to throw the towel in but just need that one glimpse that something may indeed be possible. I always say that the possibility is enough.
And so, as someone who recently has needed the push. I have been in a space where I absolutely love the things that I am creating but have wondered, “Will I ever get to where I envision myself to be?” And where is that? Well, writing books, creating courses and resources for writers and traveling and A LOT! I work hard, but if I am being totally honest, I find myself in my inner most thoughts thinking, “Am I good enough?” And it’s like for me, Chance’s project came at a time to say, “Yes. Yes you are.”
I believe that as creatives we should be creating content that not only helps people get from point A to point B and makes us some cash but that also inspires hope. Hope dealers. People are out here discouraged. People are out here wondering if their time will ever come. If they will ever make an impact. If they will ever be good enough. And the things that we create should inspire them in all those ways.
I’d love to just point out a few ways from Chance’s story I’ve been inspired with hope in my own journey in a completely different field. But lessons translate which is important to remember.
Not signing a label deal.
As an artist, that is supposed to be the epitome of “making it” right? But Chance’s dedication to doing it his own way is inspiring. As a writer, we often think, when we get this byline or this publishing contract it means that “we’ve arrived.” But what if we could still make it, be viable, and create opportunities and more all on our own?
CLICK TO TWEET // But what if we could still make it, be viable, and create opportunities and more all on our own?
Creating a masterpiece project.
Chance took his time to create Coloring Book. His last release was 2013. We live in this time where we so quickly sacrifice quality for quantity. I haven’t posted on the blog in about two weeks I think because I was so busy with Digital Storytellers and I felt so inadequate. And then I realized that I now have a commitment to quality posts and will never throw anything up on the blog just because.
Not selling his music.
Chance is pretty adamant about not wanting to sell music which has caused major waves with labels and even opened up discussions on major awards that only go to artists that have music available for distribution. Again, this was just such reminder that we all don’t have to do it the same way. I don’t really want to sell you $595 courses. LOL. So I try to make things affordable so that you never have to choose between wanting to be a better writer and breaking the bank. There are opportunities to make money, because clearly we all need to survive, but it doesn’t have to be at the expense of the very people that support you.
Speaking to God in Public.
This is a major key. Chance’s album is not a gospel project. But he speaks openly and freely about his faith. I have had people say to me “Oh it’s so cool how you include your faith because I wouldn’t want to alienate people.” And I think, how can I separate my faith from who I am? Like seriously, “Don’t be mad!” My faith is a part of me and I respect other people’s values but I will never be afraid to speak to God in public.
Shoutouts to his baby momma.
Listen, it is no secret that for the most part women get called all types of Bs and hoes in most popular music today. But here we have someone who is going completely against the grain by shouting out “And my daughter couldn’t have a better mother.” And “when my ex got pregnant and became my everything.” It is okay to go against the grain. It’s okay to talk about the things that may not be popular opinion but are true to you and your reality. I want this to always be a place where I can express views that may not be shared by the masses. Like it’s not okay to constantly be called Bs and hoes in music and be expected to like it. Sidenote.
I know, it’s just music to some people. But I believe that every art has the capability to completely change lives, to save lives, and to inspire a next generation of greats. Think about the things that you are creating. Can they do that? Are they that good? Are they honest? Are they authentic? Are they quality? If not, it may be time to do some re-evaluation.
CLICK TO TWEET // I believe that every art has the capability to completely change lives, to save lives, and to inspire a next generation of greats
Tell me about something that you’ve consumed that completely inspired your mission and journey? Would love to hear about it in the comments.
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: