DJ IZ: The Difference Between Success and Failure


There are a couple of traits that I’ve experienced that seem important to me with this generation, this culture. It’s a two-sided coin to me. And when I say two-sided coin I see, one, great areas for success. Two, I see remedies for failure. The great side of the coin that I see with this generation and culture is, one, they have no fear. They fake it until they make it. They boast before they’ve done anything, but they have this confidence and it’s a mixture of entitlement. It’s a mixture of, “I don’t give a F. This is what it is. This is who I am, and I’m dope.” Gotta have that. Gotta have those things. You gotta believe. If nobody believes in you, you gotta believe in yourself.” So I love all those characteristics with this generation.

Flipside of the coin, work ethic is boring to them. Sacrifice, they don’t even know what that means. The appetite to display it is what you love. They do it in different ways. For my generation we were taught you got work, you got to work, work, work, work, work, work. Then everything else is a byproduct in that, right, you’re… “I’ve made it,” or, “I’m this,” or, “My talent.” To them, it’s all about their skill and their talent and that’s as far as they can think. And I see this firsthand, we’re just visiting the students at the school I came from.

But what I’ve also found is why some of these kids don’t necessarily make it in the process of sitting with somebody who’s actually has done it, who is actually coming back to share and instill information is because it’s a very clever way of weeding out the person who is not willing to get up on time, not really in a place to engage and acquire information. Meaning, you got to take on the mentality of I haven’t done anything yet. I don’t know anything yet. You got to be humble. And one of the key ingredients that I see with this culture is they’re not humble. They’ve already arrived.

So, if you feel and your mentality is, “I’ve already arrived.” As a mentor what can I really pour into you? What can I do? And see, it’s only until you get around some real kids that have really done it and are doing it and have been able to do it over and over and over again until where you say, “Oh.” You fade to black and your copout is either, “Oh, it just wasn’t for me,” or, “I don’t really like how they were teaching,” or, “I wasn’t really learning.” Those are the kind of things you tend to come up with and that’s just where the culture is at. When I sit with folks, I sit with this generation, this culture, the first thing they want to know is “Man, nice car. How much money, man? I mean, are you…” Whereas me, I was just like, “Damn, how did you learn how to do that?” It’s not much you make was never, it’s just I was always in awe of the actual ability and skill that it took to be great.

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