In a world full of roses, be a sunflower.

When everything is coming up roses for everyone else, do you want to join in, or do you want to differentiate?

When it looks as if everybody else is succeeding with a particular formula, do you want to adopt that quickly and leverage that to your success or do you want to stand apart from what everyone else is doing, and be absolutely unique?

There are valid arguments for both approaches to this quandary. Some might argue that if there is fertile territory that has been established, it would be foolish not to find a way to participate in that treasure trove. Witness what happened around Twitter for the last four years.

The converse opinion would state that if everybody else is already doing something, the territory is becoming crowded, and will get ever more crowded, which is all the more reason to venture into something absolutely unique and stand apart from the crowd.

In the choice to stand apart from what everyone else is doing, there is a risk that you could be completely wrong in your assessment, and you might miss out on something that is prosperous and opportune.

Whereas you could be equally convincing in your assessment, that if everyone else is already doing something, creating something new and fresh is far more satisfying and, when it proves to be successful, differentiates you from everyone else in the field.

Is one of these answers, correct?

It would probably depend on whom you ask, and upon which prior occurrences they would be basing their assessment on. We are creatures that are stimulated by multitudes of variables, some of which are conscious and others are buried deep within the subconscious.

The individual choices that we make, and the options that appeal to us versus those that appeal to others, transpire for a host of reasons, yet in the very end, I believe we all want to thrive, and the choice to thrive often times must come with specific compromises or choices that we might make that will mitigate the opportunities at our immediate disposal.

When something is on a successful streak, regardless of industry, it is very common to see competition leverage that market opportunity to make significant sums of money. There’s nothing that paints this option as being a better or worse choice than to differentiate, and do something new, other than the fact that a rapidly growing, fertile marketplace, is always one in which we might be able to benefit quicker and faster if we are the right kind of product that can easily fit into that marketplace and compete.

As a personal preference, I have always opted to be the sunflower instead of the rose. My internal being dictates a deeply driven necessity that guides me continuously to new territory, which is great for exploration and ultimate positive exploitation in the most lucrative categories.

When you wake up and find yourself in a sea of roses, perhaps you might opt to become a sunflower.

Happy Wednesday!

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Written by Brian Weiner
When I was 5 years old, I discovered that the lemon tree in the backyard + dixie cups + water and sugar and I was in business. I have been hooked on that ever since. In 1979, I borrowed $14,000 to create a brand new product... photographic greeting cards with no text on the inside, called Paradise Photography. That was the start of The Illusion Factory. Since then, The Illusion Factory has been entrusted by all of the major studios and broadcasters with the advertising and marketing of over $7 billion in filmed, live, broadcast, gaming, AR, VR and regulated gaming forms of entertainment, generating more than $100 Billion in revenue and 265 awards for creativity and technology for our clients. When I took a break from film school at UCLA to move to Hawaii, my mother did not lecture me. Instead, she took 150 of her favorite aphorisms and in her beautiful calligraphy, wrote them artistically throughout a blank journal. That is the origin of the Lessons from the Mountain series. Since then, on my journeys to the top of a mountain to watch the sunrise, I have spent countless hours contemplating words of wisdom from the sages of all races, genders and political persuasions, constantly accumulating the thoughts to guide me on my life path. I hope you enjoy my books. Please let me know your thoughts, as I highly value your feedback!