They have provided an essential foundation for my life

Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

My grandmother was about as wise as a person could get. She died in 1998, but the lessons and messages that she instilled in me continue to shape and guide my life.

Here are five timeless lessons that she taught me that were life-changing.

1. Clothes Don’t Make the Man

When my classmates were mocking me in grade school for wearing my grandfather’s outdated clothes, it humiliated me. My grandmother later explained that clothes, nor any other materialistic thing define a person. Their character does, and I still live by that.

2. One Monkey Don’t Stop No Show

My aunt was furious with me for eating too much of her legendary spaghetti. My…


It must be sincere for it to work

Photo by KTMD ENTERTAINMENT on Unsplash

Sometimes a goal can feel impossible to achieve. The more you think about it, the more you become discouraged.

It usually happens with something that seems too big to happen, but faith can make impossibility a reality.

Years ago, I desperately wanted to get hired by a sales organization that was ranked as the top workplace in the state.

I aced the interview and the background check and all that was left was to pass the licensing exam. It seemed simple enough; I just had to score a minimum of 70 to make my goal a reality.

I struggled mightily…


It takes the right focus

Photo by Ramiro Pianarosa on Unsplash

Instead of looking for a quick fix or begging others for advice, I found that your own self-awareness can destroy bad habits.

Yes, I know. It’s a bigger shock than finding out that R. Kelly should be banned from recess — but it’s true. I became a curious consumer of alcohol back in 2000, and within months, I was hooked.

But the allure of drinking wasn’t the taste, which was absolute garbage. Actually, I never could pinpoint what was so compelling about getting hammered to the ceiling from brewskis and hard liquor.

Until last year.

I challenged myself to go…


Five games into his comeback produced a masterpiece

MJ in NYC 3/28/95.
Photo courtesy of Flickr user krausjulius

The Setup

Michael Jordan’s famous two-word fax, released to the world on March 18, 1995, was simple in its audacious declaration that the seminal basketball giant was ending his 17-month retirement to return to playing in the NBA.

However, the “I’m Back” fax was a bit misleading in the fact that MJ’s timing was off in the first few games and his shooting was nightmarish.

In other words, he was on the court, but he wasn’t actually “back.”

That is until he showed up in New York City.

The Perfect Setting For a Grand Performance

26 years ago today, Jordan immortalized the term “double nickel” with a signature 55…


The iconic golfer was raised as a robot

Tiger Woods.
“Tiger Woods” by myophoto is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

After watching HBO’s riveting two-part documentary on Tiger Woods, I came away awestruck and shocked. I have long known the general details of his historic rise up the ranks of professional golf; how he made a boring sport dominated by old white men into a cool ass event that tons of black people couldn’t wait to watch.

I knew about his father Earl and the obsession he had in molding his only son into a global phenomenon. …


The man is a massive inspiration

Al Sharpton.
“Governor Phil Murphy and Reverend Al Sharpton deliver remarks at the National Action Network/NJRC Re-entry facility in Newark on June 23rd , 2020 (Edwin J. Torres/GovernorÕs Office).” by GovPhilMurphy is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

I have been aware of Al Sharpton for at least 25 years. I don’t ever think about his politics or even his controversies throughout his long career. But I absolutely admire him because of his dramatic physical transformation and his ongoing dedication to maintain that.

There was a moment in 1996 when I asked my aunt to put a perm in my hair because Michael Jackson was wearing his hair that way at the time. …


It is not for the faint of heart

Photo by Chris Lawton on Unsplash


I just completed my 140th workout in a span of 180 days. Who knew that changing your life would suck so damn bad?

Maybe you can relate. I hope so, because in the midst of the “sucking,” it’s also a fascinating journey of self-discovery. Turns out, you don’t know yourself as well as you thought.

I’m still in the very early stages of a massive life upgrade. Here are three things I learned during the past six months that you will be smart to remember while changing your life.

1. Throw Your Feelings in the Trash

Any good personal development book will tell you that you’ll never…


Looking back on the legend’s shocking comeback

Bulls Pacers 1995
Photo courtesy of Flickr user alirodriguezb26

The Setup

As my “F” riddled senior year at Glenville High School stretched into its final few months, I was one distracted guy.

Distracted from even caring about my piss poor academic performance and the nearly guaranteed first failure of a grade in my entire school career.

This was March 1995 and the guy who was dominating television and my thoughts practically 24/7 was “The Brentwood Slasher.”

Yes, O.J.

But out of nowhere, I started hearing vague reports on television and radio that Air Jordan, as in the retired Michael Jordan was considering a return to pro basketball!!!

And ditching his minor…


The once-controversial ex-boxer has surprisingly become a role model

“Mike Tyson, a Man of the People” by shelbysdrummond is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

For many years, I observed Mike Tyson from afar, not really as a fan but I was definitely aware of his legendary status in the world of boxing. I had also known about the many controversies and transgressions in the man’s life, but still, I never paid him much attention.

Something changed in recent years with regard to my own perception of him, and I can now call myself a fan. This is because of the unbelievable life that he has lived, heavy in the spotlight the past 35 years, but everything that came before that shaped who he was…

Deante L. Young

Personal Development Writer | Deante Unlimited podcast, Host | Deante: Under Construction web series, Star | Deante Young Enterprises, Chief Creative Architect

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store