Eating crab legs in a Bentley

They want you to fit in. Doing things differently makes you a marked man. It takes courage to be yourself. Fit in! Don't fly too high! Don't try to be too special! They will laugh when you fail and they will scorn when you succeed. But I say that doing things differently is the mark of someone who is more likely to succeed.

I heard a story yesterday from a guy who was appalled as he cleaned out a Bentley (you know, the very expensive car) at the dealership where he worked. The owner of the car had been shelling and eating crab legs in the car and dropping the shells on the floor. The smell was awful and the idea that anyone would do that to a $250,000 car was worse!

The car belonged to then-NBA-star, Allen Iverson. He and a group of friends would drive around while indulging in crab legs and throwing the crab bits all over the car.

That brings me to my point. Allen Iverson, one of the great players in NBA history and one of the most prolific scorers the league has ever known was eccentric and very different in many ways. I'm not saying that destroying the interior of your Bentley will make you great at whatever you do, but I would argue that whatever it was that led him to be OK with this crab situation was a contributing factor in what drove him to greatness in the sport he played.

Those who play to blend in never stick out. Kind of redundant, but it's true. If you always try to blend in it will be 10x harder to become great, to stick out, to make a difference.

So be you, be different, embrace what makes you different, awkward, and weird. That's the special sauce that nobody else has. Don't let special be choked away trying to appease others and blend in.