Growing up, we are taught to fit in. Being the weird kid is a sure way to become separated from your peer group. We continue this belief as we get older. Most people stay in their comfortable lives not taking the risk to be different.
You aren’t going to do anything significant without moving out of your comfort zone. Most people pretty much do what they are expected to do. People don’t want to be different because it is perceived to be too risky.
Many businesses wonder why they grow to a certain level then stop growing. They are just like every other business. Nothing makes them stand out.
Hugh MacLeod is an artist and an author like no one else I know. He is famous for drawing cartoons on the back of business cards. His language can be a little strong, but that is what makes him weird. It is also what makes him memorable. He is knocking it out of the park because of who he is. His is selling his art for hundreds of dollars. When he wrote his first book “ignore everybody” it was an instant best seller because he had such a strong following. People like him because he is unapologeticly weird.
Another example is Lady Gaga and is certainly an example of someone who is very weird. She has created a brand for herself that is shock. It works for her because that is what gets you to first notice her. She is actually a very talented singer and musician. She skyrocketed to stardom because of her weirdness.
I’m not suggesting you use foul language like Hugh or dress like Saturn to get noticed. I am suggesting that you find something that is unique about you and expand it to the point of being weird. Ask yourself what makes you unique. What do people remember about you?
If you can’t find how you are unique take time now to find it or determine how you will be different. No matter where you are in life. If you are a student, if you are just starting your career, if you have been in the same job for years, if you are retired, what do people say about you that makes you like no one else? If people aren’t talking about how you are different, they aren’t remembering you.
How will you be picked for a scholarship before someone else? How are you going to be promoted? How is someone going to select you or your business over all other businesses? Why would anyone be your friend?
This where I tell you how I have found success being unique? Well, just because I write about it doesn’t mean I have succeeded at it yet. It doesn’t mean that I don’t know what to do.
What I believe makes me unique is that I am a stereotypical professional looking white guy. I am also an introvert that loves speaking in front of groups of 5 or 6 or groups of hundreds. I wear a tie almost every day. I am emotional and really enjoy good “chick flick” movies. I enjoy going shopping (even if all I do is window shop). One of my favorite stores is Bed Bath and Beyond. I also play the Tuba.
Some people may call you strange. If so, do you really care? No question that they will remember you. When you are weird you are closer to being your authentic self. You are closer to enjoying what you do because you are able to be yourself.
“What is right for one soul may not be right for another. It may mean having to stand on your own and do something strange in the eyes of others.”
- Eileen Caddy
What makes you unique, unlike anyone else? What are you going to do to make yourself unique?