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Become the Architect of Your Own Story: Livingston’s Powerful Lyrics

Hello Story Builders,

Lately, my car stereo is blasting a new album on repeat, Hometown Odyssey by Livingston.

Livingston’s music, especially his latest album, is a profound lesson in resilience and self-empowerment. It reminds me that criticism, anxiety, and depression, while often seen as obstacles, can indeed be the fuel that allows us to construct the strongest version of ourselves.

Livingston is a 21-year-old from Denton, Texas. As someone who called Denton home during graduate school, it is heartwarming to support a fellow Texan, especially when his music resonates so deeply with my own life philosophy.

While I could detail my thoughts on each song, for this blog, I want to focus on one particular song, Architect.

‘Cause I’ll take all your sticks and stones
Turn ’em into miracles
Let me let you know, oh-ooh, oh-ooh, oh
I’m never gonna want your pity
Oh, no, no, look at you so cynical
But if I let it go, oh-ooh, oh-ooh, oh
Who else is gonna build this city?

Embracing Criticism as a Foundation

Criticism surrounds us, waiting to tear down what we’ve built or halt our progress. Yet, what if we viewed these challenges not as barriers but as the very materials from which to build? By embracing critique and cynics, we’re not giving in to negativity; we’re using it as a catalyst for growth—a way to fortify our resolve and refine our vision.


This song is called Architect, should I drop it??

♬ Architect by Livingston – Livingston

Building Our Own Cities

I have definitely had my share of critics. When you work on the edge of innovation and are bold enough to move forward when a need presents itself, you will attract doubters. Their words often live in our minds. They have the potential to damage our resolve.

But what if we took all those words, all those doubts, and made them the foundation of our city? What if we took something that was meant to be dark, was given to us to hurt us, and turned it into a meaningful representation of strength? What a powerful image. And if we don’t take the agency over our life, who will?

“Who else is gonna build this city?” isn’t just a rhetorical question—it’s a call to action. Too often, we relinquish control, allowing others to shape our lives and dictate our worth. Livingston’s music is a call to reclaim that power, to be the architects of our own destiny. It is time to take back the narrative and ensure that if a city is to be built in our name, it’s constructed on our terms, reflecting our truths and dreams.

The Silent Power of Resilience

This concept, of transforming the negative into a foundation for our achievements, isn’t just poetic—it’s practical. Throughout history, the greatest innovators and leaders have often faced opposition. Yet, it was their ability to take that opposition—the sticks and stones—and construct monuments of resilience that set them apart. Similarly, embracing the challenges we face, acknowledging them, and then using them as stepping stones, is what builds our character and defines our journey.

Resilience doesn’t always roar. Sometimes, it’s the quiet voice at the end of the day whispering, “I will try again tomorrow.” It’s about harnessing our inner strength to move forward, even when everything seems stacked against us. Our power doesn’t come from avoiding criticism or adversity but from facing it head-on and building our empire upon it.

Creating Miracles

In a world where skepticism often drowns out the whispers of hope, choosing to build from the ruins is a remarkable display of courage. I’ve always believed that the real architects of change are those who can craft beauty from despair, who see potential where others see ruin. These are the individuals I seek for my team — not those who wait for conditions to be perfect but those who are willing to start with what they have, even if it’s just ashes. And those who see the challenge to build from ashes as an exciting opportunity.

The reality is, doubters and critics are omnipresent. They are the background noise to every endeavor we undertake. Yet, their skepticism, rather than being a barrier, can serve as a catalyst for growth. The naysayers, the ones who question every decision, who hover in the background offering nothing but pessimism, inadvertently challenge us to push harder, to prove them wrong, not through words but through the very cities we build from our dreams and efforts.

So, let the doubters cast their shadows. Let them stand on the sidelines wrapped in their blankets of fear and uncertainty. Their skepticism is their choice, just as building from the ashes is ours. Rarely do you see them building a future of their own.

The Architect of Your Own Destiny

I don’t know about you, but I don’t have the luxury of engaging with every cynical voice, not when there’s so much building to be done. My focus, my energy, is reserved for creating something enduring, something that will stand long after the voices of doubt have faded into silence. This is the work, the mission. And it is here, in the heart of creation, that I find miracles, patiently waiting to be built.

So, as we face the doubters, the cynics, and the hurdles, let’s embrace them as part of our construction crew. They’re unknowingly handing us the very materials we need to build our cities, our legacies. And in doing so, we’re not just building structures; we’re crafting miracles from the ashes of adversity.

To my fellow story builders, let’s keep constructing, keep creating, and most importantly, keep turning our obstacles into opportunities. Our work is far from done, but with every challenge we overcome, we’re one step closer to building a city that stands as a testament to our resilience, our creativity, and our unyielding spirit.

Let the music play, let the critics talk, and let’s continue to build our miracles, brick by brick.