I am never one to pick up a book and read it willingly without anyone telling me to. Which is SAD I know. I think reading is super important and healthy for the brain. I have friends who are book worms and consume books/novels like I do with video games. Video games are pieces of art. But words in a book that help create a beautiful piece of literature are powerful (and have been for thousand of years).
That being said, it is RARE if I read a book on my own. I wish this wasn’t the case. But a good friend opened my eyes as to why I never read. I told them I wish I read more and she said, “You just haven’t found the right type of book.” Which may seem like an obvious solution to this “problem” of mine. The only book I had actually read on my own time during class was Kevin Harts first book I Can’t Make This Up: Life Lessons. I loved the book and I did learn a lot. It was great reading about Kevs journey. Especially towards the end of my high school career. The one quote I remember from the book was, “People will discourage you from your dream if It doesn’t make money.” Or something to that extent. Quote hit hard and I always think about it.
The latest book I decided to pick up was Charalamagne Tha Gods first book Black Privilege: Opportunity Comes to Those Who Create It. I have become a big fan of Charlamagne in these past few months. His honesty is extremely entertaining and I think he has very good, honest, opinions. His honesty and confidence is inspiring.
Right off the bat by the title I thought, “How am I gonna relate to black privilege?” Well I was quickly answered by each chapter in the book. And as stated by Charlamagne himself, ” Everyone is privileged.”
So I decided I would describe each take away I had from the 8 Principles of Charlamagne.
It’s Not the Size of the Pond but the Hustle in the Fish
Thankfully I don’t suffer from the “small town” mentality a lot of people can be trapped in. A mentality people can have in cities like Monks Corner, South Carolina. Everyday on the way to work I have a clear view of the entertainment capital of the world, Las Vegas. The view never gets old, especially at night. Seeing all the lights and entertainment is inspiring.
The title of principle one isn’t referring to your physical size. It’s the mindset and mentality you can have. Even though it’s not referring to actual height, I think about that sometimes. I was never the tall kid. So when I read that title, my mind instantly went to that. So I associate my height with a big, overwhelming, city like Vegas, Chicago, New York, or Seattle and get intimidated. Whenever I do get those thoughts, I think about what I have going for me. I’m in college, I have a good paying job, I (try) go the gym, and do journalism outside of school. Things could be A LOT worse. That’s my version of privilege.
And whenever I get overwhelmed and think, “This is all pointless.” I think about my goals and know that If I want to achieve them, I got to put in the work. My hustle will open up opportunity.
(Principle 1 easily connects to Principle 5)
PYP (Pick Your Passion, Poison, or Procrastination)
Out of the three P’s, you never want to pick poison or procrastination. Chose your passion. One of biggest fears is one day waking up and feeling like a loser living with “what ifs”. I don’t want to live with that type of self-guilt.
Picking your passion is what gets you that success in life.
Fuck Your Dreams
I luckily didn’t have a “fuck your dreams” moment. I know what my dreams and goals are. I know they are realistic and obtainable. Some people don’t necessarily have realistic goals. It’s good to shoot high. But sometimes that can harm you more then help. So if anything, this chapter was extremely reassuring for me. My goals are clear (for the most part) and I’m on the right track.
There Are No Losses, Only Lessons
This chapter is pretty self explanatory. But some people may not have this outlook on life. I have been trying to as of late. In the moment it’s not so easy. Definitely easier said then done.
My biggest take away was how to handle loss. Charlamagne said he responded to his loss of jobs by saying, “Thank you for the opportunity.” Which is a great way of looking at things. Recently I had a pretty cool opportunity with an article I wanted to write. It fell through but I still have that experience. No one can take that away from me. Of course when I made the connection I was upset. But then I realized, It still happened. The general public may not know. But again, it happened.
The article not being published isn’t in any way shape of form a loss. It’s a lesson and it was a chance to grow as a journalist.
Put the Weed in the Bag!
This is my favorite principle of them all. It relates to principle 1. All this tedious, repetitive work gets old real quick! But you gotta keep your goals in mind. You’re doing whatever it is you’re doing for a reason. You can’t skip steps in life. You gotta go through it all to truly be successful.
It’s an extremely comforting thought whenever I get frustrated.
Live Your Truth
You ever seen the 8 Mile with Eminem? That’s essentially this chapter. If you remember the end of that movie, Eminem pretty much disses himself in the final rap battle. Leaving his opponent, Clarence, with no ammo for a come back. He was LIVING his truth. No one can use anything against him if he is living it. Be proud of who you are. Insecurity is a bitch and EVERYONE has them. Fuck em’. Live your life. Be happy.
Give People the Credit They Deserve for Being Stupid
This chapter was actually about being open to growth. Sometimes you are the person you have to straight up call DUMB. You can’t be opposed to any help or mentorship based off of someones skin color, sexuality, or gender. You have no idea how many doors you’re potentially closing off. You must be coach able. Smart people learn from their own mistakes, wise people learn from the mistakes of others.
Access Your Black Privilege
EVERYONE IS PRIVILEGED
Now that was a very short synopsis of principle 8. But it’s the truth. I can’t relate to black privilege. I am a Hispanic kid who has grown up in white neighborhoods. My family isn’t extremely wealthy, but we’re doing better than a lot of families. This may sound EXTREMELY dumb, but not being able to say I’ve had a real “struggle” in life makes me feel guilty. I know how my parents grew up, I know how other kids grew up. I am privileged. And I feel guilty that I can’t ever FULLY recognize how lucky I am. I can look around know that I have a lot. That’s easy. But i’ll never be able to have that feeling of comfort I think my parents want me to have. At least I don’t know how to at this moment.
So instead of feeling guilty, I have to live my truth. Instead of sulking, I must acknowledge how much I truly have and appreciate it and move on. I do have a head start with life compared to many. But it falls on me to actually utilize my opportunity and not waste it! I can only access MY privilege if I create the opportunities myself!
If you couldn’t tell, I loved this book and gladly display it on my bookshelf. I’ll for sure read Charlamagnes second book Shook One: Anxiety Playing Tricks on Me
Thank you for reading 1365 words of absolute nothing! And remember to PUT THE WEED IN THE BAG!