How Is Your State of Readiness?
Yesterday I witnessed one of my best friends landing his biggest (and most relevant) position to date. No, he wasn’t running for President, nor was he taking the bar to become a lawyer… nothing as significant as that. What he did “win” was positioning beside (and with) 2 of the biggest rappers of our day; I’m talking rappers that have consistently been on the TOP 10 list for the past 5 to 7 years. Yet, as much as we may have wanted to celebrate, this was the norm in his life just as it is in mine. What I mean is, this happens to us all the time, whether its my book deals, film deals or strategic alliances, or his alignment with some of our generations most important artists. This is our “zone.” We make deals. We substantiate progress with those we meet. And we correspond between one another in many ways and means. That’s why its the norm for us. We’ve also been raised by “entrepreneurs” who have achieved greatness in some way and those references have (so to speak) “rubbed off” on us. Not that it was in our genetics, but that we embraced and appreciated who our leadership was, what they taught us by their actions and accomplishments, as well as what we observed. That was enough to build strong references of success/however measured. But my buddy also assumed this new positioning with a state of readiness. Readiness means so much. It can be circumstance or chance, or pot luck. But even in that light, the success would not be realized without a “state of readiness.” Readiness means so much more than brushing your teeth before the big interview, or showering up before a date. Readiness means that you are experienced and educated and savvy about the tasks for which you are needed. How many of us are in a “state of readiness” where we are absolute in our experience and absolute in our preparation and absolute in our level of awareness and our savvy and our level of discipline??? Was the rapper 2 Chains “ready” when he recently fell victim to a highly publicized (on & off Youtube) armed robbery? Was Lauryn Hill ready when it came time for the taxes to be addressed? (NOT when the shit hit the fan, but at a time that prison could’ve been prevented?) Was your best friend “ready” when they recently received that pink slip? Can any of us be “ready” for a car accident in our path?
And on the other hand how many of us are just eager to assume the position, knowing we are not ready: we are not prepared, we are not absolute in our level of awareness and abilities in handling the task before us? In fact, I gamble that there’s a large number of people who are desperate, unprepared and over anxious to step up to the plate unprepared. Why??? Because we take shortcuts… or, we confuse risk-taking with being ill-prepared… or because its so comfortable to take the “easy” road. There are a series of reasons we take on things we can’t handle, or take directions we’re not “supposed” to take. But we already know how that story ends, where the work you’ve done is unacceptable, and that means your services are no longer required! YOU’RE FIRED! And now you might’ve even developed a bad name for yourself. So again I ask you how is your state of readiness?
Readiness is one of the gifts that I received on Parris Island in Marine Corps Boot Camp training. No, this was not the most desirable circumstance in which to learn “discipline” (physical punishment/mental torment) but in fact it is the best circumstance to unlearn those trends that we were brought up with. Unlearning usually means “culture shock” or even a “significant emotional event” in our lives that forces us to get rid of the old and accept the new. When the drill instructors yell in your face they are creating that shock that is meant to shake you from your comfortable zone; the zone had has you accepting things as they are, as they’ve always been, and how you expect they will always be. Lol at how the Marine Corp had a steel-toed boot to put up my ass to show my different! But in fact, life is ever changing and requires us to be in a new state of readiness almost every day. Many of us want things to stay the way they are because our minds and bodies do not want to accept change. Farmers did not want to accept change and they lost their farms. Entire industries did not want to accept change and so they lost their livelihoods. Vinyl records, cassette tapes, the Sears catalog, Dupont, Circuit City, Blockbuster Video, Borders Books… and so many other brands have lost their livelihoods and the brands that they worked so hard for so many decades to establish. These corporations lost what they had because of their lack of readiness. So what do I mean by readiness? For you who do not own corporations, readiness means physical fitness. Readiness means nutritional fitness. Readiness means mental, emotional, and economic fitness. If you are not fit and ready in these fields they will succumb to what we know as atrophy. Something like dying limbs on a tree that is slowly but surely being cut down. Today I implore you to maintain your state of readiness. If you can’t do it all around in all of the fields that I mentioned, then compensate and build up another limb to maybe compensate for the one that lacks strength. In other words, do not make excuses or give-in, but for your lack of readiness. Naturally, you can’t build a limb that is already been severed. However you can try to compensate by staying in a state of readiness in other ways and means. We all know Steve Wonder cannot see, yet has achieved some major accomplishments in his lifetime. Has he in fact compensated for his deficit; of course he has. And then there are stories of others who have amazing achievements even though they have suffered great physical harm. My dad who lost a limb early in his life compensated by being and becoming one of the biggest entrepreneurs in our city. Those references have “rubbed off” onto me.
I’M READY! I’M ALWAYS READY!!!