This is a part three of four about my personal letter to my prince.
You are The Protector
Treat every woman you meet with the same respect you have for your mother and grandmother. Treat her like she is a queen with respect, admiration, and manners. See son, that’s a lost art nowadays. Calling any woman a bitch and a hoe is totally unacceptable! Think about if someone called your mom that. Doesn’t feel good does it? Don’t call someone a name you wouldn’t use to call your mom or any woman in your family. Treat the women in your life the way you would want to be treated. Know yourself and be who you are. Always remember you attract your insecurities, so you have to be able to conquer the battle from within.
When you are ready to start pursuing a young lady remember this:
Open every door. When a young lady is with you, make her feel she is the most precious thing in the world. Open her car door, open the door to the restaurant and open the door to your heart. Open your heart to be loved and show love to others. Opening up the door to your heart takes boldness because it will cause you the most pain and the most joy. One thing about the heart is that it is the strongest muscular organ in your body. The heart takes on the most pain but continues to keep a beat and rhythm.
Protect her at all costs. If you ever see a Brinks or Loomis armored truck, you will recognize two things – it’s holding something valuable and it’s well protected. No matter where you go always protect her mind, body and spirit. When you walk down the street with her, always walk on the side closest to the street. When it rains, protect her hair, trust me on this! It saves you from the long conversations about how long it took and how much she spent getting her hair done. Sister will let you know every single detail, so keep an umbrella handy.
Settle her mind from wondering and be a man of your word. Call her back when you say you are going to. Arrive on time even though she won’t be ready. Express how you feel about her daily and weekly. Keep the communication lines open and be consistent. Communication should be 60% 30% 10%. 60 percent face-to-face interaction, 30 percent over the phone or FaceTime and 10 percent texting. You’re probably thinking “Why Dad?”. When you are face-to-face with someone you see their reactions, body language and posture. Keep in mind communication is the key and once it stops the relationship does also.
Keep her spiritually covered by praying with her and for her. When something is good, there will always be opposition. You have the power to cover her when all hell is breaking loose. Look at it like this: You are the fertilizer dirt that covers the plant seed. Once the seed is covered, it’s protected from all the elements. That goes for anyone that you love.
Be practical and realistic
Make realistic goals and expectations for yourself early on in life. Many days you will have to balance many things in the different seasons of your life. The most important of these is to be spiritually disciplined and have compassion for others. Be humble and willing to lift others up as they climb to new heights. Keep your pride down and your head held high. There is nothing in this world that you cannot do. Being a well-balanced person prepares you for the unexpected things in life and allows you to act and react to the world in positive ways.
No matter what you do in life keep educating yourself by reading books. The more you read, the more information you will know. I’ve read a few books that have continued to fuel my passion for knowledge. The Autobiography of Malcom X, He Motions, Soul on Ice, and Between the World and Me are just a few of my favorites. Don’t just skim through the book, take time and read what the authors are saying. Books are fundamental and they can open your eyes to things that you may never know. Don’t dumb down yourself to fit in with others. Your mind is yours mind and no one else’s. No one can ever take away your education, intelligence, and creativity.
Be able to learn how to speak and pronounce your words. There’s nothing in this world like an intelligent black man. You have an advantage that you probably don’t know you have. It’s called the switch. Not like the tree branches that I got hit with as a child, but the switch to change your tone. It’s when you switch your tone from corporate to urban.
Within our black community, we use slang as a second language. It’s not the best way to communicate, but it’s a necessary tool to keep in your arsenal. Learn to eliminate profanity and verbal placeholders like, ‘um, uh, ahh’. Challenge yourself to learn two different languages and speak them fluently. One way to learn different cultures is to get out there and travel.
Travel, travel, travel my son! The world is so much bigger than what you see in your own backyard. Traveling opens your eyes to greater opportunities that are bigger and more meaningful than you could ever imagine. Its ok to travel by yourself but I encourage you to take someone along with you. Take your time when traveling and fully see the culture and immerse yourself in it. Listen to the natives and learn their traditions and history. You can learn a lot from other people by spending quality time with them.
Young Prince, keep this in mind, surround yourself with positive people because everyone will show you their true intentions over time. Be slow to make friends, but once you do, strive to keep them. Friends are your greatest investment; be sure to choose them wisely. You don’t have to have a lot of friends, son – quality beats quantity. Learn early to put people in categories and life will be a little easier. This will keep you balanced in all areas of your life. Also be able to stand on your own and stand for something.
I heard this quote years ago, and I wanted to share it with you. “In life have three main people in your inner circle and they can be either men or women. The first one is someone you look up to and they are mentoring you. The second one is someone on the same level as you and you are bouncing things off each other. The third person is someone you are mentoring and passing on key knowledge to. The reason for these three is that one is always guiding you, another is living it with you and the last one you are passing along information for the next generation.
As black men, we should be passing on information to the next generation so that they won’t have to go through the struggles the previous generation had to go through. Life is learned by trial and error and life’s lessons will be your greatest curriculum taught to the school of the next generation. Life doesn’t get easier, you just get stronger.