Most of the things I do don’t follow social norms or conventions. It’s boring to do what everyone else does just because it’s the safest and most socially acceptable option. The downside is that when you do things that others are unfamiliar with, many will speak boldly and loudly about how foolish you are for thinking that you might actually succeed.
You want to buy a private jet?! Hahaha! How stupid…just fly in a regular plane like the rest of us. You want to buy an electric car from an unproven company?! The company is going to go bankrupt and your car will break down…just drive a regular car like the rest of us! These aren’t just examples, they are paraphrased statements that have been said to me. While I respect and understand the desire to stick with things that are proven to work well, it’s not what excites me.
It has nothing to do with flaunting possessions. Possessions can disappear in a moment and life isn’t measured by how much you own. Instead, it’s more exciting to pursue things that can enhance the quality of life for myself and others, despite its popularity. The success of the iPod is due, in-part, to a group of “silly” early-adopters who bought a $399 MP3 player instead of the Sandisk Sansa’s and Diamond Rio’s that were cheaper and far more popular at the time.
This is also true for the people who want to invent entirely new ways of doing things. In the late 1800’s, cars were only owned by the wealthy and were quite cumbersome to drive, so people used other less-convenient forms of travel, like railroads and angry horses. Then Henry Ford came along and figured out a better way to enhance people’s lives by introducing the Model T—an easier, more reliable, cheaper car that was in the financial reach of the majority of Americans…and he did it after going bankrupt two times!
Imagine being super excited about bringing a new way of doing things to the world and being discouraged by the negativity of people who try to kill your idea because they don’t understand it. Sometimes it’s exhausting. I look at it this way—a hammer can be used to build houses and it can also be used to destroy them. Too many people use their hammers to destroy houses…not just other people’s houses, but their own also. But imagine how much better the world would be if the people who desire to do great things in unconventional ways can do so without dream killers smashing an idea to shreds before it is even started.
That’s why I started Peculiar PPL. I wanted to start a company that creates products and services for people who desire to make a positive impact on the world using their unique way of thinking and doing. Pioneers (or Peculiar people) are an under-recognized population that is quickly going extinct. Save the Peculiar…the world needs them!
To the trailblazers: If you’re using your uniqueness to make a positive change, don’t let the hammer-wielders sway you from your life’s purpose to make a positive impact. The greatest oak tree was once just a little nut that stood its ground!