There are very few celebrities as polarizing as Kanye West. From his infamous Taylor Swift outbreak to his recent controversial statements, everyone has an opinion on him. However, nobody can deny his success and his influence in mainstream pop culture in fashion and in music.
Beyond Kanye’s antics and wild moments, we can uncover some truths and some lessons about his life that we can apply in our daily lives. Whether you’re a die hard disciple in the House of Ye or you think he’s an asshole, everyone can use a little bit of Ye’s philosophy in their lives.
#1 Be Yourself and Be Polarizing
If there was one thing about Kanye West, he’s not afraid to say what’s on his mind. From Taylor Swift to George Bush, Kanye has said things that many people have agreed with, and even more people have disagreed with. However, what is admirable about this is that he say’s what is on his mind regardless of what anyone thinks.
Now I’m not saying to run out and object to weddings or interrupt the next speech you hear, but what I am saying is think back to the last time you wanted to express an opinion or an idea and you didn’t. It was probably a group meeting and you had an idea or a comment that you didn’t express. This partially stems from a lack of self-confidence. You can check out how to develop that in a previous post, but whenever you do that, it shoots down your confidence a little bit. You’re essentially saying to yourself, “My ideas are not good enough to be heard,” so cut that shit out. How? Simple
EXPRESS YOUR OPINIONS
Think back to what we say about Kanye West and his unapologetic expression of opinion. He is not afraid to say what’s on his mind and it shows. People like that radiate confidence and are not afraid to be themselves. As a result, people like that are polarizing–meaning that some people absolutely detest this person, yet others absolutely love that person. There in lie’s the secret of Kanye West: polarity.
In the modern world of political correctness, we’ve lost the sense of authenticity. Just listen to two strangers speaking with each other at a business party or a casual conversation. There are no negatives. Everything is interesting or a great experience. That trip was incredible. No, backpacking across Europe and getting robbed was not an “eye-opening experience”, it fucking sucked. I’m not saying to use that kind of language when appropriate in every context, but have an opinion.
Remember, it’s better to be loved and hated than ignored. People have made careers off controversial opinions. Nobody is remembered for being a sheep.
Now this is probably the most controversial things about Kanye West but it’s one of my favorite. He believes that he can do anything. He might not have believed it before, but he definitely believes it now. However, contrary to popular belief, his confidence is earned.
Quick history lesson: Kanye West started out as a producer but he really wanted to be a rapper. At the time, all rappers were (or at least portrayed) some sort of gangster/thug lifestyle and Kayne West did not fit the bill. As a result, he was passed on time and time again until he was finally given his chance to rap and ran with it.
He’s been through hardship, doubt, and dream-crushing scenarios only to rise to the peak of rap superstardom. I would say that the confidence and borderline arrogant behavior is warranted.
However, there is a happy medium between a no confidence pile of goo and an egotistical maniac. If you follow Kanye’s discography, his most self-absorbed album was not surprisingly titled Yeezus. With tracks such as I Am A God on there, we can safely say he likes himself. However, in his most recent album Ye, we see a different side of Kanye. One that is more grounded and almost regretful of the facade he placed on himself, as he is struggling with mental issues at the time.
So where does this leave us? The people that aren’t mega popstars. Somewhere in between. We see here two sides of a pendulum. On the one side, we see someone we don’t want to be: someone with no confidence, but on the other we see something equally as dangerous (albeit I would argue the better of two extremes) in the arrogance.
Believe In Yourself
One thing that Kanye does not do is give up. Most people give up too easily. You apply for a job and get rejected, you don’t want to apply again. You don’t get accepted into a great school, and you get discouraged. However, the greats keep trying. Look at Kanye West – nobody believed that he could be a rapper, Tom Brady – picked #199 in the draft, Michael Jordan – cut from his basketball team.
I understand that these people are exceptions rather than the rule, but everyone can use some perseverance and courage every once in a while. Giving up too easily is giving up on yourself, and that’s something we don’t accept here. Neither should you.
Kanye wanted to be a rapper. So what did he do? He worked and capitalized on his opportunity. Kanye wanted to make clothing even though nobody in the fashion industry took him seriously. He now has a fashion line called Yeezy.
Whether you listen to Kanye West or Katy Perry or you wear Yeezy or Yves Saint Laurent, Kanye’s perseverance and determination to do what he wants to do in spite of opposition or resistance is something that we can all learn from.
From rap megastar Kanye West, we can all draw a bit of inspiration and motivation to apply to our lives. You’re Welcome.