Keys be with you
(The Philippine Star) - January 21, 2016 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines – How’s that New Year’s resolution coming along? Unless you’re Beyoncé or J.J. Abrams, you probably still want to do better in your career, in your relationships, or even in simply being yourself. But as we’ve learned, wanting to change is the easy part; doing the actual committing is hard. At this point in the year, you’ve probably already bailed out on some of your resolutions much like the rest of us. Better luck next year, right? Not really. Change starts when you decide for it to happen, after all. Thanks to meme-able producer DJ Khaled, being proactive and grateful has gotten its sexy back. And now, so can you.

These days, it’s impossible to browse through your feed without seeing phrases like “Major key to success” and “Bless up.” For Khaled, whose popularity grew through his Snapchat (arguably even more than it did through his musical career), it’s about having the proper mindset to be able to change your lifestyle. Khaled has been dedicated to breaking down the big goals into everyday tasks and reminders and he does so in the most millennial (and surprisingly, the most effective) way possible — by going viral. Think self-motivating essays from Thought Catalog and Elite Daily but in byte-sized snaps. Whether he is watering his plants, riding his jet ski, or having a haircut, there is always a major life lesson waiting to be unlocked. Although his posts are mostly self-righteous and worthy of a meme (or it’s own emoji keyboard tbh), deep, deep down there are nuggets of wisdom we can pick up.

If you haven’t followed him yet (@djkhaled305), you’re totally missing out. But lucky for you, we listed down five of his major keys to success and tried to figure out how TF it can help you win, win, win — no matter what.

1. Get a manicure and pedicure once a week.

It really is quite unclear how having clean nails will lead to success. Yes, it’s only proper to groom your toenails if you always snap your feet while walking along the pathway to success (a.k.a. a million-dollar landscaped garden). For the rest of us, sometimes it just really feels nice to match our nail polish with our #OOTDs. But DJ Khaled is just really all about hygiene. His morning routine will seriously make you want to petition snapchat for some kind of warning before loading certain types of content. Case in point: scrubbing with Dove soap while in the shower, gargling mouthwash without a shirt on, and slathering cocoa butter all over his chest. It’s not really a sight you’d want to see after breakfast, but you still watch it anyway because his post-grooming energy is highly contagious. It’s just like getting a drastic haircut after a breakup or putting on a red lippie on a sh*tty day. The key is really to focus on doing the little things that make you feel good and to do it as often as you can. If you’re wondering where Khaled gets his confidence, no one can really tell. But booking a mani-pedi and a quick trip to the grocery might be a good start.

2. Don’t ride a jet ski at night.

For someone who is the president of a music record label, counting a jet ski as a regular mode of transportation seems pretty normal. DJ Khaled uses his for a nice afternoon escapade around the sea. You might have even heard of that time he got a ticket for driving his jet ski late in the afternoon and eventually getting lost in pitch-black waters. In true Khaled fashion, he documented everything on Snapchat for three reasons: 1) someone watching might actually get him some help; 2) the flash from the phone was his only source of light; 3) it was an opportunity to drop a major key to success. He had always been a preacher of self-love so if he wants to ride a jet ski to visit his friend Rick Ross, he will do it. But at the same time, it means being responsible for whatever consequences come with it. Certain things may not go as planned, but the only thing that is important anyway is to make it. And you get there only by not giving up. It may be hard, it may be traumatizing, it will probably be viral, but the greatest lessons in life always come from overcoming great challenges.

3. When people close the door on you, just open it.

While his snaps interpret this quote quite literally, that doesn’t mean you have to. Yes, DJ Khaled comes from a place of power and money (lots of it!). But let’s admit it, not a lot of people knew who he was (besides being that guy who shouts his name at the beginning of some hip-hop tracks) before he joined Snapchat. He has been a music producer for a long time and even became the president of Def Jam South in 2009. But even then, not a lot of people took him seriously. With countless number one tracks under his belt, you’d think he’d get the respect that he deserves. But that really wasn’t the case. Lucky for him, he was able to motivate himself enough to not let others get the best of him. Lucky for you, he is on a mission to help you make it to the other side too. Take notes, get empowered, and be brave enough unlock your own path.

4. Green apples.

It doesn’t take more than five seconds to Google the health benefits of eating an apple a day. It is rich in antioxidants and contains a lot of fiber that helps in digestion. In fact, you probably already know that. It’s just that you don’t include apples in your routine as strictly as you hoped you would. It’s not to say that DJ Khaled is some health guru (he’s really not), but he does take his well-being seriously and he reminds us to do the same. The point is not so much to stock up on green apples but to commit to the steps that you wish to take to improve your health. He shows us this by being consistent with his own example. You may even have seen him snapping while sweating on the treadmill or enjoying his egg whites and almond milk with Cinnamon Toast Crunch for breakfast (special shout-out to Chef Dee!). Doing five pushups or eating a salad for lunch won’t automatically make you fit overnight, but you’d be surprised at how accomplished you’ll feel for actually taking that small step. It might even motivate you to just keep doing so until you reach your goal. Progress really comes in doing the little things.

5. Walk with me to the pathway to more success.

Ever since joining Snapchat in October last year, DJ Khaled’s following has grown at least tenfold. Today, he has around four million followers religiously waiting for what major key he is about to drop next. While it’s quite interesting to know the sales statistics of green apples and cocoa butter, Khaled’s influence easily registers online. In fact, economic news site Quartz even reported that the traffic to Emojipedia site for the now-cool key emoji has increased by 800 percent from November to December 2015 alone. Although it’s easy to see the DJ as a meme (TBH, it’s really hard not to), you should still be able to enjoy the fluff without ignoring his efforts to make a positive impact. Yes, he’s #GGSS. Yes, he needs to be more nuanced. Yes, he seriously needs to stop taking his shirt off. But he also made optimism and gratitude cool again and that’s really quite refreshing in a feed full of trolls and political hate. So say all you want about DJ Khaled, but don’t think you’ll be able to get away with feeling #blessed without thinking of him — even for a bit.


For more of DJ Khaled’s keys to success, follow him on Snapchat (@DJKhaled305) or visit You can thank us later.

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