I guess we should have done this the first time, huh?

Songs in the Key of Life is a brand new column, in which our writers discuss specific songs that played an integral part in a life event. It could be a song closely associated with summer, or a song that reminds one of us of the struggle to put ourselves back together after a traumatic happening. Music can serve as a salve, or at the very least an identifier for specific instances in one’s life, and this column reflects the power music has to shape us. Now, on with the show.-ed.

50 Cent’s voice demands respect whether or not he is on an aggressive track; never mind the fact that his intimidating physique matches his vocal chords. Sometimes songs like this can put a rechargeable battery in your back and someone or something will gladly remove it if needed.

Change is usually uncomfortable for most individuals. We transition by force, readiness, or necessity. When I chose to switch positions at my job for over 5 years, I felt as if I needed to. Had I gone on being underpaid and not promoted for my accomplishments, I would have underestimated my worth.  When the time came, I approached upper management for an increase in salary and title promotion – denied! I left.

In my next position, I felt beyond intimidated. I guess the “new environment” jitters were taking control of me. After three weeks I began to think I made the wrong decision. Why did I decide to remove myself from my comfort zone? I was now making a decent salary but not the most confident in my new area. It was not going to get any better by dwelling in misery. I wasn’t familiar with anyone there to trust and share my insecurities. The next best option was to get my feelings settled on my own. I turned to music.

As I searched through my catalog, I was on a hunt for any piece of material that would make me feel as if I owned the world. The first person who came to mind was 50 Cent.  “Fiddy” is a bully in his own right. As I felt like my new venture was punking me, I decided the best thing to do was fight back.

Every morning while on the train, I would make the angry silverback gorilla face and with 50’s song blasting in my headphones, I would lip synch the words…”n!gg@$ screw they face up at me, on some real sh!t son they don’t want beef”… I’m sure people thought I was going to go postal once I reached my destination. I would then march through those corporate office doors with no fear whatsoever.

It had gotten to the point where even when I made mistakes and fudged up important metrics, I would dare anyone to challenge me. It wasn’t until I had gotten my review that I realized I wasn’t part of “G-G-G-G-G-Unit”. My tough guy streak abruptly came to an end when I realized it would affect my livelihood if I tried to bully my manager and end up losing my job. I began listening to Kenny G more.

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