What’s the Difference!!

Being able to identify the difference, the contrast, the uniqueness is important to finding the email you want, among thousands. If your inbox is like mine at home or at work, there are legions of messages and they seem to multiply by the millisecond. It’s important to know the fastest way to retrieve the ones you want, unless you want to spend your day scrolling. I think of this fact often while working at my graphic design desk.

Throughout my day I need to refer to the artwork requests that my customers have made in their emails. I need to pull up specific notes among thousands. I greatly helps to find unique search terms. An email consists of three basic parts; the subject, the body and the return address. Say my customer’s name is John Smith and the subject is Tee Shirt Order and the body says something about Shirt, these generic words don’t help me much. I will pull up everything with a John or all the Smiths or every message with Tee and Shirt in it, which is like all of them!

I have to find something singularly particular and exclusive to this one message or person. I need a school name and sport or I need their actual email address spelled correctly. Basically, I want to focus on only on the things that are different about this one message. That’s the helpful clue to finding a needle in a haystack.

I can remember a time in my teenage life, when sameness is all I desired. I wanted to blend in and be just like (a mythical) ‘everyone else’. I had the idea that I should not stand out, but be indistinguishable. A carbon copy of the in-crowd, sounded like heaven to me.

Oh, back then all I could see of myself was the ugly differences in my body, in my abilities, accomplishments and pretty much everything else. I did go through a time when I was sick and couldn’t participate in sports and middle school stuff. I’m not real sure I would have anyway. I would have been too self conscious to really try… You know, because of my differences and all…

So here we are, many years later, many experiences accrued since then. Life evolves in front of the windshield screen of our eyes. I see differently now in some ways. It is our differences themselves that are the most important and special and valuable to us. Being like everyone else is deplorable actually. A grey world, a boring medium brown-grey and without a speck of bright color, sounds ugly to me.

In my position as a manger of a business I can see now more than ever, that it’s the differences that make our restaurant special. Our people are not just like everyone else, when it comes to our Team and our Guests. They are wonderfully uncommon and unique and awesome. I can see better now, that investing time to slow down and find out about individualities is our number one job.

As big or as small as our projects are, it all comes down to identifying the spark of color, among the dimly lit mass of mundanity. This blog space is a place, not to write, but to revisit and give opportunity to my own unique inner voice. These sentences would have terrified the teenage me.

Sometimes I still see people or things around me and want to copycat or emulate. It’s wasted energy though. I can though open up to my own spiritual wisdom, allowing guidance by God not the world. I can’t forget that I was made unique, purposefully not to be just like the rest of His children. Why else would He have bothered?

Enjoy today, the things that make YOU, only YOU, and Me only Me and even (a-hem) those tough to love, those tough to love.

Until next week my friends, be well and be YOU!


Aaron Nichols

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