Updated: Jan 12, 2019
Remember when we'd say "YOLO" (you only live once) right before doing something wild or reckless? YOLO was the disclaimer that would grant you courage and even an excuse to 'wild-out'. While the term YOLO itself may be played out, its meaning still resonates today. You only have one life to live, and the older we get, the less likely we are to scratch things off that we've always wanted to do before we kick the bucket. So here are 10 things every black man should do before age 30:
1. Travel Abroad
I don't care who you are; when you travel around the world, you are not coming back the same person. Low-key, it's the new millennial way to subtlety flex because of the exclusivity in traveling over 10 hours on an airplane to a foreign country. Once you go overseas, it not only expands your horizons, but you'll automatically be cultured. Visiting foreign lands will add context to the photos you saw in your high school history books too.
Overseas travel will force you to try new customs from wardrobe, food and drink. Even the McDonalds' menus are different in each country overseas. Once you get a taste of the travel bug, you'll want to add more stamps to your passport, which is like a badge of honor in itself.
2. Shoot Your Shot
You never know until you try. It was Michal Jordan that said, "you miss 100-percent of the shots you don't try". This goes beyond making your move on that Instagram model...it relates to that job or promotion you want, that business you've been thinking of starting or anything holding you back because of false fear. You might miss, but you might make it. When I lived in Washington DC, fresh out of college my Facebook friend posted a job announcement to work at the Pentagon. With zero experience in the field, I responded and even though I didn't have a security clearance I got a call back from the organization stating that they wanted to meet me. What I thought was going to be a job interview, actually turned out to be a job offer to work at the Pentagon...(Yes, THE PENTAGON) for $64K per year, and I was only twenty-four years old at the time. Life, can be crazy like that, imagine if I never shot my shot.
3. Invest in a Fully Custom Suit
A custom suit will give you three things, CON, FI and DENCE [confidence]...oh when you look good, you most certainly feel good. Even if you have to save your pennies up, invest in at least one custom suit. Your wardrobe, along with your energy will speak volumes before you even open your mouth to utter a word so at the least, put some thought and pride into your appearance. First off, designing the suit will give you a great sense of pride, that one-of-one feeling of knowing you won't see it on the rack or on anyone else. Suits are already a necessity for your wardrobe, but the customized suit will automatically become one of your favorites.
A fully customized suit also gives you the authority to design from the colors, buttons, materials and even pockets. They can range from $500 - $1K, but can go as high as $5K. Not to say you'll have to revamp your entire wardrobe, but after the responses, looks and treatment you'll receive after investing in your first 'big boy' suit, you just may get the motivation to go harder in your career or talent to fully invest in your entire closet.
If you're not failing, you're not trying hard enough to reach your full potential. You ever notice how little leagues are moving to those "participation trophies"? Well, I can't imagine the adult equivalent to that. Failing and quitting are two different things. Failing builds character and allows you to learn and reevaluate yourself. Quitting means the end or you gave up. By the age of thirty, all men should experience and be able to deal with failure because it's what propels us for the comeback.
No new friends, that's a lie. Networking is crucial to reaching new levels. This is how you'll learn from those that have been there before you, or connect with people going in the same direction as you. The real key to networking is fostering 'genuine' relationships because the fake ones will require too much energy and will turn you off in the long run.
6. Treat Your Feet
Brethren, this is so crucial on so many levels. The first thing is to remove the negative stigma that taking care of yourself is feminine. I guarantee you that women pay attention to details like your finger and toenails, so it's important not to neglect them. As a man, if you are taking care of the small things that are both hygienic and cosmetic, it will translate and say a lot about the major things like, "he'll take care of as well".
As a bonus, nail salons are a great place to low-key meet women. The first time I ever got a pedicure, I received so many compliments from women that stared at my feet. I also know that some of your favorite male athletes and entertainers consistently get their hands and feet done. Fellas, we can be pampered too, there's nothing wrong with it. Women are extremely good at the attention to details so it's a bonus when you show that you also take care of the small things when it comes to grooming.
7. Date as Many Women as Possible
No! Disclaimer - no one is saying go out and be the greatest hoe or gigolo that ever lived. This is also not a declaration to slay as many women as possible either. In essence, don't be afraid to date...especially if dating is with the intent to find your Mrs. Right.
By thirty, if a man hasn't found his true love, he should at least have enough experience to know what he wants and doesn't. Most importantly by age thirty, a man should know how to love himself and how he wants to be loved. Listen to Float On, by The Floaters, tell that woman your name, your sign and what you're looking for. Ok, nah don't do that, especially the way old man Charles, the Libra said he "likes a woman that is quiet." Another disclaimer, if you are in love with your current woman without any doubt, then there is no need to experience or sow your 'royal' oats. If you have a good thing, MARRY THAT WOMAN.
8. Find a Hobby
What's something you enjoy doing, something that you could do without being paid to do it? Something besides having sex. It's important to find a hobby to create balance in your life. You'll work over forty hours a week because you have to whether you enjoy it or not. Your hobby will bring fulfillment you'll enjoy, and it won't feel like a chore. Whether it's playing pick up games at the gym, working out, restoring an old car or even painting...hobbies are essential to every man's sanity.
9. Go on a Mission Trip
Two words - LIFE CHANGING - mission trips will adjust your entire perspective and humble you so quickly. Not to be confused with a vacation, mission trips are work, but most importantly they are service. While you'll feel great about yourself volunteering to bring smiles on the faces of those that live in a third world country; you'll be humbled by their needs versus the things we give value to. Poor in the United States is royalty compared to poor in third world countries. It's a noble thing to do missionary work for those in need. You'll be a changed man the moment you board your plane back to the states thinking how the people staying behind actually live there. You'll grow and have another level of appreciation and approach to life.
10. Find God
You better find God before God finds you. In other words, don't wait for a crisis to happen in your life to start praying and seeking God. I know you been to college and have watched a couple of YouTube videos that question religion, etc. I'm here to make sure you don't play yourself. God is real fool! Not trying to tell you to go and become a deacon tomorrow, I'm just saying find and keep a relationship with God. I swear you can talk to God the same way you talk to yourself in your head. You could feel on top of the entire world one minute and in the next minute things can change in an instant...almost like going viral, you can never see it coming. Never ever get too big to think you'll never need the Most High. You know that prayer you ask when you have to use the restroom and you're stuck in traffic? Or what about when you have a really important phone call but your battery is at one percent? Who do you pray to overcome? Well, when your phone dies, there's only one to call on.