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How to Stand Out

A Speck of Pepper in a Land of Salt


'The Open Palm' podcast is available on Anchor, Spotify, and Apple Podcasts.

"Everything in this world is a hustle, but when you do something different than the next man you stand out."

This was told to me by one of my passengers on a Lyft ride. At first I didn't think much of this saying, but after some thought I realized its profound insight. This particular phrase would continue to stick with me on my journey of self-discovery.

I once gave a ride for lady and her companion to a hospital in San Antonio. When they first approached me, I stood outside next to the back door of my car and opened the door for them. This gesture had become customary for me over my time doing ride share services. Interestingly enough, a lot of my Uber and Lyft passengers have told me that they never had a driver do this! I found this to be quite surprising (especially for women). My passengers let me know that it was unusual to have the door held open for them. I could tell by the curious look in their eyes that this immediately scored me "brownie points." I have even heard a passenger chuckle to her friend saying "Five stars!" after I opened the door. I never before had any idea that such a small gesture meant so much to people.

After acquiring this knowledge, I began to treat my rides as though they were a luxury experience. It did not matter what kind of vehicle I was driving. Part of this practice came from my own parents having a limousine business in San Antonio. I learned a lot just by watching them conduct their business affairs. So when the lady told me that "Everything in this world is a hustle." and that I stood out, this simple idea really struck me.

Stay saucy.

There are many different ways in which we do the same things. We all tend to give a certain flavor or spice to our activities because we all have a unique outlook on life. Some of our perspectives have been passed down to us, but that still doesn't mean we have to behave or respond alike to each circumstance. It is like the saying "I can give you the recipe, but the sauce still won't taste the same." By adding our likeness, we truly stand out as individuals.

If you are reading this and have your own business, if you're an entrepreneur, or if you're just looking to succeed in life, I pray you take this message to heart: whatever you do, stand out. You are the most unique individual in the world, just like everyone else. I have come to find that we are very similar in our differences and different in our similarities. In this paradoxical way, we can always find a way to relate to other people no matter what class, race, or nationality. The more that we get away from our true nature we start to blend into the crowd, but the more that we stay in tune with who we really are we stand apart from the rest. All of a sudden we're like colorful needles in a giant haystack.

Did you know that there is no one else in the world who walks or talks the same as you? Someone might be able to imitate you, but your voice and gait are one in billions. The same goes for your teeth and eyes. You will not find an identical match in the entire world. It gets much deeper than just our fingerprints. Every facet of our being is like our own signature. No two snowflakes are the same, and neither do they try to be. In this way, actually trying to act normal seems irrational. There's nothing normal about you!

I really want you to embrace this concept, so I decided to put together a step-by-step guide on how to stand out.

Step One

Be yourself.

That's it! It's as easy as breathing. As you interact with others, be unafraid to be yourself. Be genuine and know that everything in this life is a hustle. We are always selling people on who we are. When we do something different than the next person, people will realize, recognize, and appreciate it. Being you should be effortless, and yet it is truly a rare thing in society today. Like a speck of pepper in a land of salt, you'll find that when you let go, you won't even have to try. You'll just be.

By Jerome Shaw
Find me on Twitter and Instagram: @jromeshaw

Jerome Shaw
Jerome Shaw

I am an Actor/Entertainer currently living in Los Angeles. I am daily inspired by others and seek to be a source of inspiration as well. May these thought-provoking ideas and topics encourage you to become your greatest version. Be blessed.

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