…make the most of those opportunities. I knew where I came from, and I knew that I wasn’t coming from a privileged background. I started from the bottom, and I have had to work hard. I had to work twice as hard to live comfortably, to pay for my talent show outfits, to pay for a place to live. I was like a starving artist at a very young age, and that really taught me the importance of working hard, perseverance, believing in yourself when nobody believes in you, when you’re down, being your own motivation…. and I just learned a lot about life.”

“I think it’s important that women know that there’s nothing they can’t do. They should practicing dropkicking the ‘t’ off and turning the word into ‘can.’ Don’t be afraid to try and be the first to do something. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, and continue to embrace the things that make you unique even if it makes others uncomfortable. Just remember that perfection is often the enemy of greatness.”

“I’ve learned you can’t be afraid to fail — fail and fail often. That’s when you get to the great parts of who you are, and you build your character. Don’t focus on being perfect. Be authentic. When it’s all said and done, you can say you led a very honest life. It’s important to be honest, and let people see your genuine spirit, see you in your down moments and how you overcome those moments. That’s what really defines you as a person.”

Janelle Monae: Why She Wants To Fail Over & Over Again  was originally published on blackdoctor.org

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