Motivational Tweets From A Rapper

Gucci Mane is living his best life. For quick context and for those unfamiliar, Gucci is a rapper from Atlanta who is currently touring throughout countries in Europe - all places he is visiting for the first time in his life...and he is flourishing. He's been through a transformation of sorts - from being incarcerated (while still releasing albums), to losing weight, eating healthy, and now declaring positive affirmations. What I love most about his glo-up is that he sounds and looks genuinely happy with the way things are going and he's giving us tips along the way:


Whether these tweets are a reminder for himself, or a small piece of what has been working for him up until this point, doesn't really matter. What matters- and what I know to be true -  is that affirmations are incredibly powerful. Declaring what you want, who you are, who you aspire to be out loud is transformative and will get you through any sort of slump you may be experiencing.

Reinvent Yourself

Since April, I've been knee deep in socializing, job hunting, and studying for the GMAT(!). It's actually a lot more exciting than it may sound.

Working as a freelance consultant and writer for the past year has given me the ability to stress out for hours and sometimes days on end (😉), to create my own boundaries (e.g. set my alarm for 6:45 am instead of sleeping 'til 11 am), and to truly grasp what time of day my brain is the most functional for focus-driven tasks such as writing web content for a client or re-learning quadratic equations.

I can attest that I've managed to find a balance between taking breaks from focus instead of breaks from distraction, while still allowing (and often times requiring) myself to get out of the house to meet up with friends or attend an event.

However, I am kicking things up a notch by stretching my mind and capabilities even further than I imagined. As I think about what I want my life to look like 6 months, 1 year, 10 years down the road,  while connecting the dots from what I've done in the past, I aim for building social capital and wealth.

My goal has never been to be complacent, and because of that, it's important to have the ability to reinvent myself. This means pursuing opportunities that were once the last thing I wanted to do, attending events that are intended for 'members only' (shout out to my plugs) and saying no to opportunities that don't offer room for growth.

Doubling down on what matters to me right now: making money, getting into my top MBA program, and building a network of amazing humans (in that order) is a priority.

If you're reading this and have some advice, cool events, or job opportunities that may be up my alley, I'm all ears!

on collaboration

I've always been inspired by people's stories. When I first started using ride-sharing services like Uber, I was intrigued by learning about my drivers and it felt as if every single person that chauffeured me to my destination had something incredible to share. I remember telling a friend that I wanted to work for Uber, but only to write about the drivers and share it with the world, but that idea was quickly shot down. Seems as if everyone had that idea. My point is that I honestly feel that I have met some fascinating people on the planet, just in my everyday occurrences.  As much as I don't necessarily enjoy small talk, I often get a sense that someone has an interesting story just by looking at them. One example is from last spring. I was walking my usual trail at a park near my house, I saw a black man swimming in the park lake in a full-on scuba outfit with a camera in hand, underwater.

I was walking my usual trail at a park near my house, I saw a black man swimming in the park lake in a full-on scuba outfit with a camera in hand, underwater. That doesn't happen everyday - at least to me. I started to walk the trail but turned around because I wanted to find out who this guy was. Turns out he's a local Baltimore photographer and was taking some initial shots for a future photoshoot. We exchanged numbers and are still friends to this day.

Fast forward to present day,  I've been working on a couple projects related to collaboration and amplifying the work of people who look like me. Speaking to friends, writing for various publications and throwing out ideas to my trusted circle, people like Kyle, Karlene, and Dorien (pictured below) have come into my life at the right time. Each of their stories is inspiring, impactful and I'm grateful that people like them exist in this world. We recently met to go over ideas for an upcoming event, I'm still in awe from how our visions have turned into something tangible.

Oh, Baltimore

My love for Baltimore grows stronger as the days go by. I remember when I first moved back home in 2013, after a stint in NYC, feeling devastated and defeated. Unsure how to rebuild my life in a somewhat familiar place, the same reasons why I left (2002) in the first place were still ingrained in the back of my mind.

"I don't see myself in this city. It's too slow paced. It's too Black and White. Where are the Haitians that I'm not related to? Where are my Caribbean folks at?!"

It took some time for me to adjust to the pace, the shift in cultures in the neighborhood I grew up (hello Nigerians!) and the fact that there are some like-minded people that I can learn from.

Integrating myself into the different niche communities and cultures that Baltimore consists of has been my saving grace. I've gained perspective and have learned the complexities that are often overlooked by the media and even people who live in the surrounding counties.

I've pushed myself to learn and surround myself with people of different backgrounds, and by coincidence or serendipitously, I've met some of the most brilliant and ridiculously talented people.  The game-changers, the influencers, community organizers, the builders, activists, and entrepreneurs. The types of people who care about making this city shine.

And right now, that's precisely what we need.

sing from your heart.

Lately I've been voicing my ideas on a project I'm launching to a select few people I admire. Unsurprisingly, the universe has manifested my visions into a reality. When your vision is so clear, so pristine, so vast that your soul is begging for you to put it out in the world, the universe makes it's way into your life by showing you who can help, and propel you to take action to make it concrete.

Writing in one of my favorite places to eat in Baltimore, Sia's "Chandelier" played when I walked inside.  Aside from the fact that this song is an absolute banger, I took this as a sign to revisit her albums.

For those unfamiliar with Sia or her music, she has managed to survive depression and anxiety by being completely vulnerable through her music, and winning awards along the way.

Her music is a reminder to always sing from your heart, speak your truth and if you don't, your thoughts will eat you alive.