I’m not going to pretend to understand what it is like to have overbearing, strict, no-nonsense parents so I won’t even try. Fortunately and unfortunately to an extent, I didn’t grow up with the pressure that many millennials face from their parents. I think it is for that reason that I am able to loudly and proudly proclaim “fuck what a hater (or anyone) has to say!”
Why are young folks constantly trying to live their lives for other people?
You want to major in Black American Studies but your parents want you to major in accounting so you major in accounting. Why? If your parents are footing the bill, then I get it. You should definitely try to compromise. But if financial aid is paying for you to go to school, why are you going to study someone else’s dream? Or worse, you’ve already graduated from college and you hate your career but you’re too afraid to leave your profession. Why? That has never made any sense to me. Everyday people get up to spend nearly half of their lives at work.
If you don’t like what you do, you’re spending half of your life in misery.
I understand that bills have to be paid. Trust me. I know about bills. But if you have hustle and drive, then a way will be made out of no way! That part is always hard for folks to believe. I myself was even a disciple of the “how and worried” flock, but trying to understand how causes you to worry and worrying is about as effective as a placebo.
When you decide to take the first step in making a decision or a change in your life, the universe (yes, I’m quoting the Secret but it’s real!) finds a way to open doors for you. It may not come right away but as long as you’re working, the universe is working with you.
Let’s get back to the haters. A hater isn’t necessarily an enemy. A hater can be your family, friends, co-workers, acquaintances, anyone. A hater might not even know they’re a hater either! It can be the little things:
- You’re excited about an opportunity & your friend tells you to not get your hopes up.
- You express an interest in studying a new field and your parents tell you to study nursing or engineering, even though you’ve always hated science.
The great Sean Carter once said, “Everybody can tell you how to do it, they never did it.” How can someone tell you that your dreams of becoming a writer, designer, business owner are farfetched if they themselves have never gone after their real dreams? Of course, they don’t want you to do things the way you want to. Then they won’t get the credit when you accomplish those dreams. But if you decide in your mind that you’re going after what you want, haters be damned then you’ll be the one having the last laugh and success.
The answer is simple: Follow your heart. Period. Follow. Your. Heart. Your dreams are valid. (Yes, Lupita!) You can’t live your life for anyone. Even for your parents whom I know worked morning, noon and night so that you’d have the best opportunities. They didn’t work hard for you to be unhappy. So it may break your parents heart but oh well. Live with that.
Who are you living your life for? You might ‘hurt’ some feelings and step on some toes, but you have to put yourself first.
This is particularly hard for Black women but it’s a mantra that I live by: ‘Treat yourself!’
You only get one time in this life.
Step 1: Follow your heart
Step 2: Ignore/remove the haters from your life
Step 3: Stunt on haters with your success