“I’m different, I can’t base what I’m gonna be off of what everyone isn’t. They don’t listen, just whispering behind my back, no vision, lack of ambition, so wack.”
Jay –Z - So Ambitious
am·bi·tion [am-bish-uhn] noun:
an earnest desire for some type
of achievement or distinction,
and the willingness to strive for its attainment:
I am constantly inspired by people who achieve uncommon success. I want to know what fuels, them, what did they overcome and how much did they plan it out. Whether it’s seeing Jay-Z transcend his hustler background to being on the cover the Forbes magazine with Warren Buffett, watching Bravo TV’s Chef Roble’ blaze new trails as a caterer to the rich and famous, or seeing Dick Parsons become Chairman of two of the most important companies in the country (Time Warner and Citigroup), their stories inspire me to work harder and dream bigger.
One story that continues to be a source of inspiration to me, didn’t come from a celebrity or entertainer, it came from a young brother named Mulu whom I met while he was in high school. He was applying to be a part of a mentoring program that I volunteered with and during his interview I asked him his GPA. He responded, “I have a 3.5 but I’m working to get it higher”. I knew at that moment that he was special. During a time when young black males are struggling to even graduate from high school, Mulu was already academically ahead of 99% of his peers; yet he wanted more. To me he embodies what ambition is all about.
Ambition isn’t about simply comparing yourself to those around you and being satisfied with being a little better than the rest. It’s about creating your own limitless definition for success and doing what it takes to make it happen. It’s sacrificing your free time to put in extra work and never making excuses when things don’t seem to be working out right. You do it because you want your goal more than what you see around you and you know that you would be cheating yourself to settle for less. When you’ve tapped into something that you really want to make happen, obstacles and naysayers don’t discourage you, they become fuel.
Mulu has done all of these things. Not only was he accepted into the program, he did improve his GPA, he became president of his class, and this year he will graduate from an Ivy League University. While these are all great accomplishments, you know that for Mulu, it’s just the beginning. His ambition is too strong to stop there.
Business Strategist, Technology Enthusiast & Community Servant