Jermaine Lamarr Cole or better known by his stage name J Cole is undoubtedly one of the best hip-hop artists of today. There are many rappers out there but not all can craft lyrics as raw and bold as J Cole. Not every rapper can perform the way he does too.
Every time he performs, whether on TV, in his music videos or on stage in front of millions of people, he wears his most genuine skin and in the kind of world he lives in, that’s not always easy.
His authenticity is undoubtedly the key to his success in building his audience. He doesn’t focus much on the money he’ll get with making music. He also pays close attention to how people truly react to work. His lyrics are filled with truth and humility and he has become an inspiration to many. Because for him, life is all about freedom and truth and simplicity.
Below we’ve picked the finest J Cole quotes from his lyrics and interviews for you to enjoy and share with other fans.
1. On Conviction
No such thing as life that’s better than yours ~ J. Cole
If there’s one thing common in most people these days, that would be the fact that we love to compare our lives to others and declare that they have better lives. This may be a simple thought but it is pretty toxic. Why not hear J. Cole out and declare that there’s no life better than yours? Because until you claim that, until you start believing that your life is great, you won’t be able to make the kind of life you want.
2. On Acknowledging the Beauty and the Ugly
It’s beauty in the struggle, ugliness in the success ~ J. Cole
One thing’s for sure, you will be wasting time if you keep on chasing beauty. If you keep on wishing for a life that is perfect and beautiful and stress-free. Because there’s no such kind of life. We all have good days and bad days. But if you look at both the good and the bad, the beautiful and the ugly, and acknowledge them both, you will be more content than ever. Plus, it’s probably going to be more stress-free.
3. On Knowing Rain
To appreciate the sun, you gotta know what rain is ~ J. Cole
This J. Cole quote is a little similar with the one that came before and we just can’t get enough of the message it tells. We are so consumed with wanting to have the best in everything. We want to be in the sunshine all time and most definitely, we want to have that rainbow too. Don’t forget that rain has a beauty of its own. If you look at it in the right way, you’ll not only appreciate sunshine more but also the existence of rain.
4. On Giving Your Best Shot
Anything I do, I do it well ~ J. Cole
It is your duty to yourself to make sure everything you do you give it your best shot. Yes, we love second-guessing ourselves. We love asking a million what-ifs and we love to stare at the line and be consumed by the fear of crossing it. But hey, life is all about risks and trying and experiencing. So whatever risk and experience you give to yourself, make it a point that you do it well. Give your all.
5. On Acknowledging Your Tribe
You can lose all the money, but you’ll never lose people knowing you ~ J. Cole
Money makes the world go ‘round? I don’t think so. Love? Maybe… but the important thing to remember all the time is that when you find your tribe, you keep building it and you give worth to it. Not everybody is blessed with so many loving and caring people. These people are the ones you want to be on your tribe, and they stick with you because they know you love them and value them. And chances are, you will never lose them.
6. On Scratching What Others Say
Follow your heart. Don’t follow what you’ve been told you’re supposed to do ~ J. Cole
This is probably one of the most important quote we should all remember. Because, well, how many times did you do something today that you’re not actually happy about? How many times did you do something because someone told you to do it? How many dreams have you thrown away because others have dreams for you that they expect you to fulfill? Is that really the kind of life you want to life? Following what others say?
7. On Paying Attention to Distance
So here we are… it’s funny how so close can seem so far ~ J. Cole
We all have big goals – that’s a given fact. But usually, we don’t pat ourselves in the back until we achieve this goal, which will probably take time. Instead of waiting for years before you say “I did it” why not say it now? Look back notice how far you’ve come since the day you decided to chase that dream; how high you’ve reached since the day you decided to climb a ladder to your goal… maybe it’s far, maybe it’s not, but one thing’s for sure, you not at the same place as you were yesterday.
8. On Validating Your Dreams
We got dreams and we got the right to chase ‘em ~ J. Cole
This is our favourite of the J Cole quotes. In case you’re wondering, nobody really cares if you have dreams or not. We’re all busy dreaming our own dreams and working our way towards them. We don’t care about your dream at all. But yes, there will be those people whom when you share your dreams with them, they will tell you to forget about it. They’ll think you’re crazy or they don’t really understand why you have that dream in the first place. But hey, this is your life. You get to choose to chase a dream or not.
9. On Going for It
You gotta dream like you’ve never seen obstacles ~ J. Cole
And since we’re talking about dreams, it’s also a great reminder that whatever the heck this universe tells you, just go for it. There will be obstacles in life, in reality, but not in dreaming. So go ahead and build really grand dreams as if there’s no setbacks and no obstacles. Who knows, maybe you can actually turn this into a reality. Maybe you will achieve something grander. Don’t limit yourself because you think you wont be able to do it. Just go for it.
10. On Obeying No Rules
Always aim high and rarely obey the rules ~ J. Cole
This is a hard one, people, but a fairly important one. See, when we do something, whatever that is, we tend to think of how it’s supposed to be done. We look at the people we idolize or the society in general and base our steps on their rules. Dalai Lama has his own rules of doing his thing, you should too. Forget what society says on how you should do things. Because more often than not, these rules are limiting us. You think they’re there to keep us safe and prevent us from hitting rock bottom? Think again…
11. On Climbing Endlessly
Promise to my momma I’mma make it to the top, so I’mma keep climbing ‘til my heartbeat drop ~ J. Cole
Mother knows best and in this quote, J. Cole tells us to keep our promises to our moms. He also wants to remind us that until we achieve what we want, we shouldn’t stop climbing. Mom probably won’t get mad at you for not keeping your promise to her, but she won’t like it if you keep yourself from achieving whatever it is you want to achieve. Forget the fear of heights of fear of failure. It won’t take you anywhere.
12. On Playing Your Game Your Way
Either you play the game or you let the game play you ~ J. Cole
People say life is a game, and maybe it is. Maybe we all have our own rules and maybe, sometimes, we lose. But that’s what life is about – both winning and losing. There’s no problem with that. But the moment you realize you’re playing your game and you’re building your own rules, you have to commit to it. Because the game will continue even if you choose to end it abruptly, and you might not want the results.
13. On Giving Importance to Love
If you place your importance on appreciation and love, that’s enough ~ J. Cole
If there’s one thing we must appreciate every single day, that would be love. We easily forget about it and sadly, we only remember love when we’re full of other negative emotion, like pain or fear. Keep in mind that you can walk all you want but in every step, you have to remember love – the people who loves you, reasons you love yourself, whatever kind of genuine love you can think of. And by then, walking won’t be too hard. Because whatever the distance you made, that’s enough.
14. On Staying
I’mma be here for a while. None of these clowns can hurt me ~ J. Cole
Don’t you just love it when you read something about staying? When there’s a quote or a line from a song or a poem that makes a strong conviction of being here? Yes. Because we all want to be here. We all want to stay and be able to do everything we can. Thus, instead of focusing on the things that hurt us, or the experiences that temporarily emotionally crippled us, why not consider asking yourself why you want to stay? This will not only remind you that you’re here but also why you really want to be.
15. On Being Saint and Sinner
I put a lot of God in my music, but not because I’m super religious. There are a lot of demons in my music too. I acknowledge both. ~ J. Cole
See, the problem with most people these days, and the rules of our society, is that we need to pick sides. We’re often told we can’t have it all, or we should choose just one, and maybe these two are applicable, but not in all cases. More often than not, what matters more is acknowledging the two sides and playing your part in both, instead of focusing on one. There’s something to learn in the good and the bad.
16. On Being You
My fans love me for me, my beats, my rhymes. ~ J. Cole
Apparently, being yourself is not as easy as most people say. We have standards for ourselves, society have standards, people always have something to say… clearly, it’s a crazy world out here. But the moment you choose to forget what others say, you are also choosing your genuine self. And if you choose to show the genuine version of you, the more the people will choose you – flaws and failures and all. Because what attracts people the most is not the car or the money or the expensive clothes. It’s what’s in you.
17. On Giving Simplicity A Space
…we can ride with the windows down, the music loud ~ J. Cole
This world is already too complex as it is, choosing simplicity and allowing it to be part of your daily life is quite important. But of course, like any important thing, it’s also not easy. Every day we see people work so hard to achieve their dreams, and yes, this is something we should do as well. However, we must not forget that sometimes, we need to slow down a bit and allow simple living to take control of us.
18. On Forgetting Insecurity
You keep falling victim ‘cause you’re insecure, and when I tell you you’re beautiful you can’t be sure ~ J. Cole
Okay, so there’s really no such thing as forgetting insecurity. People may tell you you’re pretty and smart and everything they wish they are but are not. And yet, when you look at yourself you’ll still have a long list of insecurities. Don’t let this thought rule your head. Accept the kind words people give you and consider giving it to yourself as well. The more you believe in your own beauty, the easier it will be to make that beauty glow.
19. On Moving in Silence
If they didn’t know your dreams, they can’t shoot ‘em down ~ J. Cole
Sharing our dreams and goals to others is great. We can hear their opinions, exchange ideas, you know, all the fun and honest things in life. But sometimes, keeping these dreams to ourselves is a wise thing to do. Wouldn’t it be fun to move silently and then shock the world once they see how far you’ve come or how much you’ve achieved? Because sometimes, knowing the opinion off others can kill our dreams. And that’s not what we want to happen.
20. On Keeping Your Vibrant Self
Don’t let them taint your soul ~ J. Cole
J. Cole sure is the man for inspiring quotes about living your life. There’s always so much going on in this world and no matter how much we guard ourselves, this universe just drives us insane. So on days when you feel like you’re not good enough, forget about what this universe says. Believe in yourself and focus on you and your dreams. Don’t ever let others affect you negatively. Your life is your life, and you’re going to live it however you want.
21. On the Importance of Time
They say time is money but really, it’s not. If we ever go broke, time is all we got ~ J. Cole
Seriously, what is more important to you? We wake up one morning after another thus, it’s quite easy to think we will always have time. I mean, no one really wakes up and wonders when will they die, right? So the moment we get out of bed, automatically work on trying to make more money. Money is important but it doesn’t make the world go ‘round. Consider focusing on time instead. What do you want to do for your allotted 24 hours today?
22. On Seeing Through Reality
What’s real is something that the eyes can’t see ~ J. Cole
When we’re kids, we’re often told to believe only those what we can see, and by ‘see’ it usually means through our eyes. But growing up, we learn to see and hear and feel through our hearts too. And more often than not, what the heart sees is also a reality, maybe even bigger than the reality our eyes can see. Just because you can’t clearly see your goal, or can’t put words to describe it, it doesn’t mean it’s not going to be a reality.
23. On Valuing Memories
Nothing lasts forever, but at least we got these memories ~ J. Cole
More often than not, we’re so consumed with valuing the material things that our hands can touch. We forget to value the things that we have and will always have no matter what – like love, memories, and many others. So what if you have millions in your bank account? That money can disappear in an instance. But the memories we have and experiences we have, they will be forever ours to keep. It’s up to you if you want to keep them or just throw them away.
24. On Knowing Hurt
You have to hurt in order to know. Fall in order to grow ~ J. Cole
Aren’t we all afraid of hurt? Or at least exerting efforts to refrain from getting hurt? That’s human nature. Nobody wants to expose himself to pain. However, by protecting ourselves from hurt, we also end up losing the chance to experience something rad. We forgo amazing experiences because we don’t want to fall flat on our faces, feeling ashamed and hurt and all other crazy emotions. How will you grow if you keep this kind of lifestyle? How will you know if you won’t go out and find the answers for yourself?
And the last of the J Cole Quotes … 25. On Owning Your Everything
I walk along this long harbor of life and sit on the piers, reflect on my pain and sh*t on my fears ~ J. Cole
Please be reminded that no one can take control of your life but you. If you choose to stay away from your pain, that’s your choice. If you choose to look at them face to face, that’s your choice as well. We’re so consumed with listening to what others are we rarely listen to our guts. Maybe it’s about time to reflect on your fears and pain and all other emotions bottled inside you, and decide what you want to do about them.