LIFE DEALT ME A BAD HAND OR DIDN’T IT: HOW PEOPLE USE EXCUSES AS TO WHY THEY’RE NOT SUCCESSFUL IN LIFE

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“I had this to do and that to do.”


All throughout life you hear people make statements regarding them getting the short end of the stick when trying to succeed in life. They’ll tell you all the reasons why things in life didn’t go their way. They had a rough childhood and didn’t have the support. Or even they might tell you how they had children at a young age and couldn’t pursue. They’ll tell you how much of your life was so much easier than their own. But they are telling you this in the moment. I have always wondered in the past tense, while living in real space and time, do people really have it hard as they say they do. Meaning, do people have the short end of the stick. Or do people make decisions in the moments, that define their entire existence on this Earth. Because there is a lot of that as well.

For example, someone will tell you at the age of 35 years old, that they can’t pursue because  they have a family to look after. They have 3 or 4 kids, and they have to be a parent. Then they’ll slip up and tell you the age of these kids. “Well, my oldest is 5 years old.” Then it hits you that they had an entire decade of life that they didn’t have children as a responsibility. Now, the person must come up with yet another excuse as to why. “Well, before I had kids I had to take care for my parent/s.” But when you start to press them on this, they begin to fall apart once again. And that’s when you realize you must end the conversation because this conversation is heading down the road of typical. The typical talking piece on not wanting to be held accountable for your actions. They want to hop and skip over every aspect of life that they have lived.

People make excuses because they have a hard time coming to terms with the idea that they have wasted so much time on doing nothing. They have laid back and enjoyed and indulged in the moment even to a point sometimes of overindulging. But instead of just saying I overindulged, they say all the things that never happened. So what it does is that the conversation becomes a waste of time itself. This person has a character flaw, and they’re trying to figure out ways around the truth which is accountability. I am able to be accountable because that’s how my mother raised my sisters and myself. And you want to tell people so bad to take responsibility for the fact that you are in this space and situation because of you. Yes, everyone has a story, but you can’t just use the story when you were also engaging in so many activities that contradicts your struggle at hand.

In the end, you will always have people who find it hard to admit they are where they are to an extent because of themselves. Yes, there are the case of people that have been given a bad hand. But there is always someone in your spot that made it out. Your story is not a unique situation to be in, in life. But putting in the time to get a better space mentally, physically, spiritually, and financially is what people don’t want to do. They don’t want to put in that time because they don’t want to deal with the idea of putting in their all and failing. Yet they’re putting their all into to nothing so far in life and it has gotten them nowhere. Why not try to put something in to see if formulates into something great?


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MAKING YOUR OWN LUCK: HOW YOU CAN TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR LIFE

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“You might have been dealt a bad hand; use in to your advantage.”


Some great advice for life, is that no matter what your economic, social, academic, ethnic, gender background, you can overcome a bad situation, At times we feel like all hope is lost for the future. But little do we know that we may be in a better position than we realize. Like me for example, I grew up below the poverty level in the United States. But does that mean I have to always be in that position in my life. You can tailor make life to move yourself out of your current situation. Problem is that most people have a hard time moving themselves out of their bad positions.

See, in earlier posts I talked about putting yourself in the know. And most people say, “What is the know?” “The know of what?” I say, “Whatever it is you’re attaining to have in this world.” So many people want something out of life, such as a paycheck. Yet they don’t quite understand what it is they have to do to get there. They’ll say,” I need a good paying job that makes good money.” That sentence has no clear meaning to it. You have to know what career interest, what title, what pay range, and what time it could potentially take to get there. And this requires having a certain level of self-awareness. Lacking an understanding of self will make it hard to navigate the know. Because you don’t know what you’re good at, if anything at all.

So what do you have to do, you have to test out different things in life. For me, I tried multiple things before I realized I wanted to be a writer. I said to myself, “Faheem, you’re going to be a doctor.” Then I realized I don’t have the patience to deal with patients. So next I said, “You’re going to be an attorney.” And envisioned myself in a court room standing before the judge and jury. Then I realized I could never get a guilty person off or send an innocent person to jail. My big break came when I said that I would go into the business field, which is broad. And it wasn’t until I went for my MBA I realized I wanted to be a writer. Initially it was not knowing what I was doing, if ever I would be successful, but I knew I loved it.

The more I wrote, the more I became comfortable with talking about myself. And I don’t mean being into myself. I mean debriefing information, and being more transparent than before in life. So what did I do, I realized I had something, and could make it into a career. So since the year 2013, I have been writing screenplays, blogging, and my books. So what does all this have to do with making my own luck? I am putting myself in the know by researching, and continuing to learn to write. Making those moves to understand the career for you and knowing what you’re good at it. And also knowing when to make appropriate adjustments to the things you write. Because you’re not going to know everything, especially in the initial stage, yet you have to develop a feel for when things are going right or wrong.

See, in the end, you can make your own luck. You just have to be willing to put yourself in a certain mind frame. And with that mind frame, you start to understand and develop a sense of self. Once you know yourself, you can pursue your career endeavor. This way, you’re being not vague about what it is you want. Sadly enough, a lot of people will never find what they’re good at in life.


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DOUBTERS: WHY YOU ACTUALLY NEED THE HATERS IN YOUR LIFE

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“You will never make it, so why try?”


We’re always taught in our lives to surround ourselves with good people.  Place yourself around those going in the same direction as you. But what happens when all of that is attempted to be derailed by someone who wants to kill your dreams. That means you have to work that much harder to make it happen yourself. Those dream killers are the doubters who either out loud or silently told you it would never happen. They are the ones who it didn’t work for them, and don’t want it to work for you. Where does it come from; why do they need to feel the need to bring you down? And why do you actually in a way need these type of people in your life.

Doubters are people who for a number of reasons may not want to see you succeed in your career of interests. You have the first group of doubters that are the ones that will tell you try something else. They are flat out not interested in anything you do. They see you in the present state and can’t see past that point. You’re perceived by them as a slacker or loser. So they can’t get around the loser that is you. So to them you’re going to always be what your are. Another group of doubters are the people whose careers didn’t pan out so they have to tell you how much it won’t work for you. To them, they couldn’t make it and there is no way you’re better than them. So they just know you’ll fail in life. And if you do succeed, they’ll find the most negative stuff to say about you.

The third group of doubters are the people who have their success and don’t want you to surpass them. To them, you are a threat and must be stopped. But they are not going to just stop you, they’ll be overly negative. The goal is to get you to quit because a lot of times you work for them. They are comfortable with you under them and can’t stand you above where they think you should be. Kind of how comedians have come out recently after Kevin Hart. They were fine when he was below them, now he’s way above them, and now there is every reason to say he doesn’t deserve it. But the last group of doubters are the flat out hate group. They usually have no real discernible talent, and need to bring you down. Because your success further shows how much of their life was a waste. Especially if they remember when both of you were at the bottom. It shows how much time they’ve wasted in their lives.

Now, with all that I have stated, why do we need these doubters? Well, first and foremost they push us to be better. There is no motivation like people telling you you’re not good enough. You work overtime to prove them wrong. But I think the biggest reason we need doubters is to gain an insight into the human psyche. People who doubt you expose aspects of their personality. And not because of criticism; but hate. Criticizing someone is fine when you have a solution to make a situation better. But hate for the sake of hate let’s you in on who the criticizers are internally. And in the end that’s the just of doubters. They have their own internal workings going on. But how they see you and who you really are is totally different. As long as you have self-awareness, what they say has no hold.


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CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM VS. OPINIONATED CONVERSATION: HOW TO GIVE ONE AND NOT THE OTHER

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“Know when you’re helping, know when you’re not.”


I love when someone brings insightfulness to me regarding something I am working on that could make my work better. Some bit of advice that I can take and run with toward the success that I want out of life. But there is a far cry between constructive criticism and someone giving some empty opinionated reason why they don’t like something you have done. There are skill that come with providing people with knowledge that is constructive. Meaning when you criticize, make sure you have a legitimate idea to make something better. Don’t just say I don’t like it. Otherwise, not only are you not helping, but you might make the situation worse.

Now, remember before I said there is a skill that comes with giving criticism. There is a way to approach telling someone that their idea is no good without telling them it’s no good. But remember also I said that you should provide a way to make it better. Meaning, let’s say you’re running a fast food restaurant, and you get two criticisms. The first person says the food sucked, and they had an awful time. This is not good enough insight into the restaurant. Then the other person say that my steak was not all the way cooked when I wanted it well done, and when I expressed my grievances the customer service showed little to no interest in aiding me. You see, one criticism is more direct than the other.

Now, here is another aspect of the criticism that is tricky to notice. There are people who will give you in depth criticism, yet it starts to play in the arena of petty. And these are the knick-picky people who will find any reasons to kill and idea. For example, they will do things like pick a word from a written piece of your material. Then they’re give a long drawn out excuse as to how you used the word in the wrong context. They’ll write this in a passive aggressive manner to undermine your accomplishments. Or, they’ll use big words that not even they use on a daily basis just to make themselves appear knowledgeable. So people can read with adulation, like, “Wow, they sure do have a base of vocabulary.

But, as I said earlier, there need to be a way to make things better. Even if you are a critic, you should have your criticism. But make sure to imply that it would have been great if  they would have done blank. Then you leave the possibility of the person reading and gaining some insight for the next time they are working on a project. People who don’t provide a way, even if the criticism is constructive, can quickly find themselves in the empty rhetoric category that is opinionated commentary. Learn to decipher between those that want to see you do better and those that could care less.

In the end, there are people who will always have something to say about your work. Whether it’s constructive or not, they’ll have something. And you just have to learn that it comes with the territory. Not everyone is going to like what you do. Some it’s about taste and preference and others it has to do with not liking you and your work. Whatever the case, believe in your own work and keep pushing forward. Yet, once you allow it to stifle your growth, then you have lost the fight.


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FRIENEMIES OF AMERICA: WHEN YOUR ALLIES MIGHT ALSO YOUR ENEMIES

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“Ever get the feeling they hate as well?”


The United States have always been a place of constant conflict. No matter if it were related to ethnicity, religion, or gender. We have had these various social issues going back to when this land was under the control of Great Britain. But in today’s society the issues have been just as social, and directed at our new commander in chief. Since Donald J. Trump was elected president, there have been constant protest against him. The most recent controversy was last week when comedian Kath Griffin was pictured with a headless bloodied-face Trump. She has not only lost her CNN New Years Eve gig, but also a few sponsorships. But, pertaining to the people who dislike him, you ever get the feeling they are dishonest as well.

And when I say dishonest, I mean as it pertains to the same reasons they dislike the president. Trump is disliked for a number of reasons, but a few stick out the most: racial, gender, and religious. So are the people who hate him for these reasons, are themselves against the very groups that they accuse him of not liking. I pride myself on being a little more liberal than conservative, but I get the feeling the liberals are no different. I get the feeling that these liberals dislike Trump because they are afraid of their own disdain for groups poking through. What do I mean by their own held feelings about certain groups.

Well, for starters, the racial aspect of America. And when I say racial, I am obviously not pertaining to the human race, but more so how we use racial socially. You have these liberals that don’t like Trump, yet they are gentrifying Black and Latino areas, moving out groups. They are not built on keeping people and preserving culture. They remove the current culture, and adopt their own in the name of cool or trendy. Like changing the name of parts of Harlem to SOHA or Washington Heights NYC to Upper Manhattan. Yet these are the people with anti-Trump signs. They can’t see that they are the same as him, maybe even worse. They attack him for language, but their actions are far more detrimental.

What about the religious angle people on the left try to take. He is seen as xenophobic as it pertains to Muslims. But when I walk into the airport, even before Trump ran for president, people get uncomfortable with Muslims. And when I say uncomfortable, I mean the attire they sport. Mainly how the women are expected to dress. But the moment he comments on it, people get upset. But when I see the discomfort from people, it throw me off because he is supposed to be the xenophobic one. Not the liberals, they should embrace the diversity of people. Yet, there is something that is triggered when Muslim women and men are around wearing traditional garb. But what about the gender conversation?

In the United States, gender has always been a debate. But when Trump was caught in conversation regarding women, it became that much more controversial. It even prompted women in fashion to not sit next to his daughter Tiffany because of him. But then I started to think, don’t the fashion industry get criticized each year for campaigns that place unrealistic physical expectations on young women. Or the fact that they push against the use of women like Ashley Graham, a plus size model, on ad campaigns. That hypocrisy is something they have to be willing to shift as well. Can’t attack him, and continue to push into young women’s minds that they are not good enough because their bodies don’t look a certain way.

In the end, you are going to always have people who tell you not to do something, that they do themselves. We all use the excuse, “You’re held to a higher standard.” And that is true, but you’re also held maybe not to that equal standard level, but more so to that standard obligation. Meaning you shouldn’t be doing it, but he really shouldn’t be doing it. So on a scale of one to ten, he is a ten, but you’re still like a two or three. Don’t use someone else’s standard as a means to be rude yourself. If you feel he hates Muslims, don’t get uncomfortable around Muslims for that same reason. Attack is meant for things that he does that we don’t deem acceptable. Because a leader represents your country. Yet, if we are just as uncomfortable as Trump, he actually does represent the sentiment of the nation.


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