Kanye West. He’s the creator of dark, beautiful, unforgettable, well-liked, and popular music; the force behind six platinum albums; the instigator of controversy and conversations across the country and across the world; and the winner of twenty-one Grammy Awards. He’s worth over one hundred million dollars. He’s married to Kim Kardashian. And he’s mentioned on Time’s list of “The 100 Most Influential People” as a “Boundary Breaker.”
Kanye West is successful by anybody’s definition. Since he broke out onto the music scene back in 2004, he’s managed to maintain his wave of super-success for eleven years and counting.
The following are four success tips that we can all learn from the infamous Kanye West:
Success Tip # 1: Use Your Pain To Your Advantage
Out of all the lessons we can learn from Kanye, the most important is his positive mental response to pain.
On October 23rd of 2002, Kanye fell asleep at the wheel while driving home from a recording studio and fell victim to an almost fatal car crash. To heal his broken jaw, doctors wired his mouth shut with reconstructive surgery. As an up-and-coming producer and rapper, Kanye’s life and his career were both in jeopardy.
Placed in that tragic situation, many people would of felt fazed, demoralized, or pessimistic. But Kanye was optimistic. He responded with positivity.
Kanye returned to the recording studio only two weeks after the accident—with his mouth still wired shut—to record his first hit single “Through The Wire.” He used the pain of his almost-fatal car accident to create a powerful and career-launching song. He used that suffering to jump-launch a star-making album—an album that eventually made Kanye a household name.
Many people would have felt fazed, demoralized, or pessimistic when faced with that tragedy. But Kanye chose to respond to his pain with a positive mindset. He chose to respond to his pain in a positive way that created growth, purpose, passion, happiness, and success in his life. He used his pain to his advantage. Life gave him a misfortunate situation and he turned it into something beautiful.
That is a success tip we can all learn from Kanye. When you find yourself in pain, you have to remember that you can’t control the painful situations that life puts in your path. All that you can control is your mental response to the painful situations that life puts in your path.
And you always have the option of choosing to respond to your pain in positive ways that create growth, purpose, passion, genuine happiness, success, and serenity in your life. You always have the option of responding to your pain the way Kanye responded to his car accident. You can always Use Your Pain To Your Advantage.
Success Tip #2: Know Your Talents
Say what you want about Kanye. But the guy has talent.
He produces. He raps. He writes songs. He sings. He runs businesses. And he designs clothes.
Greatness is possible for any of us. And it exists in all of us. We all come into the world with powerful and unique natural talents waiting to be discovered and expressed.
So what makes Kanye special isn’t that he has talents. What makes Kanye special is that he knows what his strongest talents are. And he uses them.
No matter how many other projects and businesses he ventures into, he always remembers to come back to the talent that made him a star: creating good music. After eleven years, Kanye is still making good rap albums. He knows his talents.
That’s a success tip we can all learn from.
Success Tip #3: Marry The Right Person
It is often said that behind every great man, there is a great woman.
When we look at the world’s most successful and influential individuals, it’s hard not to notice that many of them are married to spouses that share their success. Quite a few of the world’s most successful people belong to power couples.
Bill and Hillary Clinton. Barack and Michelle Obama. Jay-z and Beyonce. Taylor Swift and Calvin Harris. Frank and Claire Underwood (fictional but iconic). The list goes on.
No matter who you are, the first quality you should look for in a relationship is love. But if success is your goal, you should also look for a partner that shares your values, ambition, drive, motivation, and greatness. Set up your very own Jay-z-and-Beyonce-power-relationship. Be a part of a power couple.
Be a part of a Kanye-West-Kim-Kardashian-power-couple. Find someone who you love but also shares your values, ambition, drive, motivation, and greatness. Marry the right person.
Success Tip #4: Never Back Down
Success Tip # 4 is Kanye’s most controversial quality.
Whether it’s pushing boundaries with his music, breaking barriers with his career in fashion design, proclaiming that “George Bush doesn’t care about black people” on national television, snatching the spotlight from Taylor Swift at the MTV Video Music Awards to proclaim that Beyonce’s “Single Ladies” was “one of the best videos of all time,” or claiming that Grammy-Award-winner Beck “should have given his award to Beyonce,” it’s clear that Kanye west never backs down—to anybody.
Now I don’t agree with all of Kanye’s decisions or statements. But I have to applaud him for his confidence, his boldness, and his willingness to stand up for what he believes in—even when there were negative consequences involved. He never backs down.
To be successful, you have to fight for your dreams with Kanye’s confidence, boldness, willingness to stand up for what you believe in—even when there are negative consequences.
You have to be ready to stand up for your greatness. Never Back Down—to anybody.