It’s no secret that Jay-Z is successful; I mean, the man is worth $810 million. So, if you’ve ever wondered what type of mindset it takes to reach that level of financial success, look no further because Jay-Z put us on game.
Got your notebook ready? Good. Here we go.
Lesson #1: Get in before it’s too late
To optimize your return on your investment, you must purchase it at its lowest value. Just like Jay-Z says in “The Story of O.J.,” “I could’a bought a place in Dumbo before it was Dumbo for like 2 million/ That same building today is worth 25 million.”
Basically, Jay-Z missed out because he didn’t invest when the property was 2 million, and now, and the property has likely reached its peak value at $25 million. Get in before it’s too late! Don’t be dumbo.
Lesson #2: Patience can get you paid
Another lesson in investing provided by Jay. You’re taking notes, right?
Here we go. When you make an investment, you want to sell it off at its highest value. And the art game is no joke, with an annual revenue of $13.5 billion in the U.S. alone!
So Jay gives us a prime example of a piece of artwork that he bought for $1 million, which grew in value to $8 million and is steadily continuing to grow. If he chose not to hold it and sell it for less than its current value, he wouldn’t have been optimizing his return on investment. Smart.
Lesson #3: Credit is key
Credit affects a myriad of significant elements in your life: your car, your house, starting a business, and sometimes even your job search! To put it simply, it’s very important.
In the snippet above, Jay refers to Jewish people as an example of financial freedom due to their tendency to invest and build their credit, instead of throwing away money. So, basically, if you want to achieve financial freedom, build your credit! That’s straightforward enough, right?
Lesson #4: Artists don’t need record deals anymore
Basically, Jay-Z is warning new artists that they don’t need to sign record deals anymore because of the multitude of channels for artists to use on their own. There’s social media, YouTube, and Soundcloud, so why deal with shady record labels? It’s very doable to be independent, just ask Chance The Rapper.
He also uses Lauryn Hill’s history with labels as a warning, referring to times when her creative freedom was blocked, the fraction of money she received compared to her sales, and even being sued by her own label.
To put it simply, if you’re an aspiring artist, just go solo!
Lesson #5: Control the options
Law 31 of the 48 Laws of Power is “Control the options — Get others to play with the cards you deal”. So, what does this mean and how does this relate to the track “Bam?”
Read the snippet above again. It says “Just set the price so n*ggas’ll live your life, my n*gga.” Get it? That’s law 31! Jay is basically saying to set the price so that whoever needs to buy will accept the terms you set.
This one was kind of subtle, so it was a bit easy to miss. But, don’t worry, I’ve got you.
Lesson #6: The body says what the mouth won’t
In “Caught Their Eyes,” Jay-Z explains that being able to read body language is what has allowed him to survive. Looking at people and noticing cues such as a twitching eyebrow, a closed-off body, and a clenched fist helps him separate the real from the fakes.
It’s very important to be able to identify people you can trust and people who are secretly against you. Especially when you’re a mogul in an industry full of power-hungry people.
(BONUS) Lesson #7: You can win from losses, too.
Maturing and growing through life means you’ll incur losses from time to time. But, Jay’s point here is that if you learn from the loss, it’s a lesson, not just a loss. And with that lesson, you can bounce back and ensure you don’t lose again.
I also believe that people tend to learn more from losses because they are naturally much more reflective as they try to bounce back. When people ride on the hyped feeling of a win, they are likely to focus only on the good that happened, opting to forget about self-reflection.
What do you think? Was there anything I missed?
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