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President Obama failed us…that’s what you came up with?

President Obama failed us…that’s what you came up with?

I speak to the whole African American community, with a focus on the entitled, obnoxious ones of us who seem to think that President Barack Obama got elected only to serve us. How disrespectful of anyone to sit back and claim that this man did not do anything for this country or our communities, after 8 years of busting his tail to improve this country all the ways he possibly could.

I would act surprised and horrified at the negative feedback from our own, but it honestly doesn’t surprise me one bit considering so many of us do nothing but tear each other down as if they get paid to do so.

    A black president doesn’t guarantee a black rights policy

    Let’s get one thing clear. Obama may have been elected because so many of us showed up and showed out at the polls both election years, but that didn’t automatically make him obligated or even able to completely advance the African American population into Easy Street. The color of Obama’s skin didn’t automatically guarantee seats at the table for everyone that looks just like him or his wife and kids, nor would that even be fair.

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    Don’t get me wrong. There is nothing wrong with wanting advancement and equality for your race. There’s nothing wrong with being pro-black and wanting to empower your community. But when was it ever okay to slight others because of their race and show favor to one particular race,as a president of the United States? And how can any of you be upset and disappointed in Obama for not doing the very thing most of you already hate Trump for actually doing? Hypocritical much?

      Stop pushing away responsibilty

      It’s time to stop spending so much effort and energy looking for people to blame,and start focusing on accountability and truth. The truth? President Obama didn’t fail the black community, nor did he ignore our cries for justice. President Obama spoke out many times on things the black community is outraged about, and did his best to promote justice and equality for all.

      Electing him did not put him under an obligation to make every single complaint black folks had his agenda. That’s what so many of these organizations we have out here are for. Join some. Already have? Join more. One can never do too much to make the world a better place starting with an individual and/or community level involvement.

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      At what point will we stop complaining about what the higher ups and celebrities AREN’T doing for us, and instead throw ourselves into the community and be the change we want to see in the world? Why spend so much time complaining over what we can’t control, instead of doing what is in our power to change what we can?

      Where the LBGTQ community succeeded

      And for those throwing out the statement that Obama did more to help the LBGTQ communities than African Americans, let’s be real. The LBGTQ communities did more to help the LBGTQ communities than African Americans did to help our communities. It wasn’t that Obama favored their community over ours. It was simply that their community united effectively, was consistent, and followed through. They showed up and showed out where it counted, their voices were heard as well as their demands for their community.

        While we were criticizing each other over what form of protest was acceptable, looking for reasons to voice outrage instead of creating demands to present where it counted, the LBGTQ community was united and solution-oriented. While we were bullying each other over religious beliefs, skin tones, and what women decide to do with their hair or weave, the LBGTQ community was focused on the changes they wanted for their community.

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        While we were busy finding stuff to be temporarily outraged about from week to week to make sure our social media accounts were popping and full of likes, the LBGTQ community was consistent, full of leadership, and wasn’t taking no for an answer.

        The bottom line? Obama didn’t work harder for the LBGTQ community..THEY worked harder and more unified for themselves. So with that being said, Obama didn’t fail us (if you are one of those who feel there was failure)…we failed ourselves.

        Don’t rely solely on a savior

        Especially if you felt one person (with his hands tied on all progress he tried to make) could have us all sitting pretty,paid, and struggle free just because he’s one of us.

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          The Bible teaches us that faith without works is dead. So basically,even the Savior himself felt that you should stop sitting back relying solely on a savior, and do YOUR part to save yourself and others.

          In the words of rapper Mystikal, “Stop ya cryin’ heffa”. Be the change.

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          Last Updated on April 6, 2020

          10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively

          10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively

          Most discussions on positively influencing others eventually touch on Dale Carnegie’s seminal work, How to Win Friends and Influence People. Written more than 83 years ago, the book touches on a core component of human interaction, building strong relationships. It is no wonder why.

          Everything that we do hinges on our ability to connect with others and formulate deep relationships. You cannot sell a house, buy a house, advance in most careers, sell a product, pitch a story, teach a course, etc. without building healthy relationships. Managers get the best results from their teams, not through brute force, but to careful appeals to their sensibilities, occasional withdrawals from the reservoir of respect they’ve built. Using these tactics, they can influence others to excellence, to productivity, and to success.

          Carnegie’s book is great. Of course, there are other resources too. Most of us have someone in our lives who positively influences us. The truth is positively influencing people is about centering the humanity of others. Chances are, you know someone who is really good at making others feel like stars. They can get you to do things that the average person cannot. Where the requests of others sound like fingernails on a chalkboard, the request from this special person sounds like music to your ears. You’re delighted to not only listen but also to oblige.

          So how to influence people in a positive way? Read on for tips.

          1. Be Authentic

          To influence people in a positive way, be authentic. Rather than being a carbon copy of someone else’s version of authenticity, uncover what it is that makes you unique.

          Discover your unique take on an issue and then live up to and honor that. Once of the reasons social media influencers are so powerful is that they have carved out a niche for themselves or taken a common issue and approached it from a novel or uncommon way. People instinctually appreciate people whose public persona matches their private values.

          Contradictions bother us because we crave stability. When someone professes to be one way, but lives contrary to that profession, it signals that they are confused or untrustworthy and thereby, inauthentic. Neither of these combinations bode well for positively influencing others.

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          2. Listen

          Growing up, my father would tell me to listen to what others said. He told me if I listened carefully, I would know all I needed to know about a person’s character, desires and needs.

          To positively influence others, you must listen to what is spoken and what is left unsaid. Therein lies the explanation for what people need in order to feel validated, supported and seen. If a person feels they are invisible, and unseen by their superiors, they are less likely to be positively influenced by that person.

          Listening meets a person’s primary need of validation and acceptance.

          Take a look at this guide on how to be a better listener: How to Practice Active Listening (A Step-By-Step Guide)

          3. Become an Expert

          Most people are predisposed to listen to, if not respect, authority. If you want to positively influence others, become an authority in the area in which you seek to lead others. Research and read everything you can about the given topic, and then look for opportunities to put your education into practice.

          You can argue over opinions. You cannot argue, or it is unwise to argue, over facts and experts come with facts.

          4. Lead with Story

          From years of working in the public relations space, I know that personal narratives, testimonials and impact stories are incredibly powerful. But I never cease to be amazed with how effective a well-timed and told story can be.

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          If you want to influence people, learn to tell stories. Your stories should be related to the issue or concept you are discussing. They should be an analogy or metaphor that explains your topic in ordinary terms and in vivid detail. To learn more about how to tell powerful stories, and the ethics of storytelling, take a look at this article: How To Tell An Interesting Story In 4 Simple Steps

          5. Lead by Example

          It is incredibly inspiring to watch passionate, talented people at work or play. One of the reasons a person who is not an athlete can be in awe of athletic prowess is because human nature appreciates the extraordinary. When we watch the Olympics, Olympic trials, gymnastic competitions, ice skating, and other competitive sports, we can recognize the effort of people who day in and day out give their all. C

          ase in point: Simone Biles. The gymnast extraordinaire won her 6TH all-around title at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships after doing a triple double. She was the first woman to do so. Watching her gave me chills. Even non-gymnasts and non-competitive athletes can appreciate the talent required to pull off such a remarkable feat.

          We celebrate remarkable accomplishments and believe that their example is proof that we too can accomplish something great, even if it isn’t qualifying for the Olympics. To influence people in a positive way, we must lead by example, lead with intention and execute with excellence.

          6. Catch People Doing Good

          A powerful way to influence people in a positive way is to catch people doing good. Instead of looking for problems, look for successes. Look for often overlooked, but critically important things that your peers, subordinates and managers do that make the work more effective and more enjoyable.

          Once you catch people doing good, name and notice their contributions.

          7. Be Effusive with Praise

          It did not take me long to notice a remarkable trait of a former boss. He not only began and ended meetings with praise, but he peppered praise throughout the entire meeting. He found a way to celebrate the unique attributes and skills of his team members. He was able to quickly and accurately assess what people were doing well and then let them and their colleagues know.

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          Meetings were not just an occasion to go through a “To Do” list, they were opportunities to celebrate accomplishments, no matter how small they are.

          8. Be Kind Rather Than Right

          I am going to level with you; this one is tough. It is easy to get caught up in a cycle of proving oneself. For people who lack confidence, or people who prioritize the opinions of others, being right is important. The validation that comes with being perceived as “right” feeds one’s ego. But in the quest to be “right,” we can hurt other people. Once we’ve hurt someone by being unkind, it is much harder to get them to listen to what we’re trying to influence them to do.

          The antidote to influencing others via bullying is to prioritize kindness above rightness. You can be kind and still stand firm in your position. For instance, many people think that they need others to validate their experience. If a person does not see the situation you experienced in the way you see it, you get upset. But your experience is your experience.

          If you and your friends go out to eat and you get food poisoning, you do not need your friends to agree that the food served at the restaurant was problematic for you. Your own experience of getting food poisoning is all the validation you need. Therefore, taking time to be right is essentially wasted and, if you were unkind in seeking validation for your food-poison experience, now you’ve really lost points.

          9. Understand a Person’s Logical, Emotional and Cooperative Needs

          The Center for Creative Leadership has argued that the best way to influence others is to appeal to their logical, emotional and cooperative needs. Their logical need is their rational and educational need. Their emotional need is the information that touches them in a deeply personal manner. The cooperative need is understanding the level of cooperation various individuals need and then appropriately offering it.

          The trick with this system is to understand that different people need different things. For some people, a strong emotional appeal will outweigh logical explanations. For others, having an opportunity to collaborate will override emotional connection.

          If you know your audience, you will know what they need in order to be positively influenced. If you have limited information about the people whom you are attempting to influence, you will be ineffective.

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          10. Understand Your Lane

          If you want to positively influence others, operate from your sphere of influence. Operate from your place of expertise. Leave everything else to others. Gone are the days when being a jack of all trades is celebrated.

          Most people appreciate brands that understand their target audience and then deliver on what that audience wants. When you focus on what you are uniquely gifted and qualified to do, and then offer that gift to the people who need it, you are likely more effective. This effectiveness is attractive.

          You cannot positively influence others if you are more preoccupied by what others do well versus what you do well.

          Final Thoughts

          Influencing people is about centering your humanity. If you want to influence others positively, focus on the way you communicate and improve the relationship with yourself first.

          It’s hard to influence others if you’re still trying to figure out how to communicate with yourself.

          More Tips About Making Influence

          Featured photo credit: Wonderlane via unsplash.com

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