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Finding The Balance; Retiring "Family Values."

I analyze myself a lot. There is always room for enhancement and improvement. Complacency has never been interesting to me nor has it been anything that I've desired, but I take notice to certain patterns in my life that attempt to leave a permanent mark, called habit, on my personality.

While I was flying across country and driving the highways to various destinations this past weekend, I went over back and forth about a few things I'm not content with right now. Primarily my social life. I've come to realize that even though I know how to communicate, I'm not the best nor am I the most efficient communicator as I thought I was. I would say that I'm shy and extremely reserved, more reserved than shy.I've never had a problem meeting people and making friends, but that's not really the issue.

The problem is I have too many hangups, with my weight and my sexuality. All of my life, I was beat down because of those two things. Quite honestly, after hearing something consistently for 20 years, you start to believe it - and it's hard to break yourself of that mindset even though you realize and see everyone does not operate out negativity and everyone isn't against you or picking at you for things that make you different.

When I come back home after my ATL and L.A. excursions over the next two weeks, I've got some serious housekeeping to do. Los Angeles always reminds me of what my life could be like if I fuck up and ATL has always been a place that I can relax and have fun with genuine people - the perfect mixed drink I need in my life right now.

A few months ago, my manager pointed out a few things to me. I heard, more than I listened, but I did listen. Because the things that she said to me resonated, but every time I go against the grain, or doing something that I know impedes the process and progress, I hear her loud and clear.

"You are scared of success." When she said that, I didn't rebuttal like I usually do. I thought about it...and I am. This isn't a new realization, but coming to terms with the reasons why is.

I've always had it hard. Not that anything is supposed to be easy, but I'm just now catching a break so to speak. And not to throw them under the bus, but I'm the only one in my family to really attempt to deviate from the "get a job and work" cycle. There are no college graduates in my family and everyone settled and became complacent. None of them ever lived out their dreams. Looking back, when I wanted to live out mine (and started to) there was all types of opposition and belittlement from every angle, which is part of the reason why I downplay my own success. My family never gave me the support or the validation that I needed and desired to succeed. And because they didn't do it first, it's been extremely hard for me to accept validation, acceptance and support from other people, while continuing to strive towards my personal goals and dreams. So when people are doing things out authentic generosity, I tend to sabotage myself, because of trust issues.

Many people will say that it doesn't matter that your family didn't do something, but it does. Your family affects every single decision that you'll ever make in your entire life. They are the basis of everything in regards to interacting with people.

In a twisted sense, my family not giving me the support that I need has really prepared me for the vicious industry that I'm apart of. If anything, my family has taught me that everyone isn't going to have your best interest, people will always have something negative to say and just because you're close with someone doesn't mean that they'll always (if ever) be on your side.

The closer I get to the release of "Pop Life," the more I see myself getting caught up in my old way of doing things - to deal with this imaginary stress that I'm creating, which is nothing more than fear, which is nothing more than me getting my own way...nothing but excuses, because I'm literally afraid to step into my role. I was created to show them that you can still go through shit and live out your wildest dreams.

Unfortunately, like most other people, my family has done a number on me. I'm not the last or first, but one of the few that talks about family the adverse affect they have on us.

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