Kanye West and the art of confidence
by alex celaya
The biggest rockstar of our generation, Kanye West continues to defy the expectations and limits that many set for him even after his masterful debut album, College Dropout. He’s changed the hip-hop landscape in a way that is unprecedented and continually has been a step ahead of all of his contemporaries. Dare we say a genius, and that is without taking into account his fashion exploits. Though for a guy that views himself with such high regard, and deservedly so, the public perception has never mirrored Kanye’s self-image.
At first his music emitted emotions that people felt they could relate to, the hard working kid from Chicago just trying to chase his dreams despite the doubt the world placed on him. We all wanted Kanye to succeed just as badly as we wished we took the risk of chasing our dreams. And unbeknownst to what anyone could have imagined, he made it damn it. But the story didn’t end there, as Kanye didn’t just merely become a successful rapper, he’s become the most influential artist since the new millennium.
But the reason Kanye has become successful isn’t simply due to his insane talent or crazy work ethic, the man believes in himself like no other. Kanye crowned himself and knew he’d make it to the top. Lets be honest, no one wants to hear that.
His personality has turned off many who may have rooted for him before. His confidence has come off as overbearing arrogance. Humility is an attribute that Kanye does not seem to possess. We liked Kanye when he was a dreamer but not when he started to show off his shine. People hate that he talks even if he can back it up.
Honestly, this is an issue that goes beyond Kanye specifically. It's always bothered me why people demand humility out of others, especially out of celebrities. What purpose does that serve? It's a gracious and admirable quality to have but being genuine and transparent should hold just as much value.
Even if the humility is false, it's applauded, even though it's a disingenuous reflection of our character. More so, what do we derive from others humility? Does it make us feel better about our own shortcomings and insecurities? Instead of forcing others to lower themselves so we feel better about ourselves shouldn’t we try to draw inspiration from someone who has ascended to the point that we are striving to reach?
Humility is an overrated quality. We love it because it doesn’t reinforce where we stand in our lives. Deep down we hate that you’re flourishing because we aren’t. We selfishly ask others to be humble.
Look I can sympathize with many of Kanye’s critics in the sense that his personality may be "obnoxious." Given the option, I probably wouldn’t hang out with the guy. But don’t let that blur your opinion of his music or his accomplishments outside of his personal life. Despite his egotistical rants and outbursts, Kanye has never got it twisted, he’s not just in it for himself, he wants people to rise to the top just like he did. He’s defended artists and begged them to believe in themselves and help each other out. "Believe in yourself so damn much that it bothers the shit out of people."
At the end of the day, the only way you’ll make it is by doing you better than anyone else. Whether that’s being humble or being unrealistically confident, whichever trait works for you. As long as you’re working on improving yourself. Because the problem that people have with those who lack humility is usually the problem they have with themselves.
“These haters be killing themselves they wanna come and get the glory”
edited by Priscilla Celestial