While Srinivas Rao’s, “The Art of Being Unmistakable” is geared towards entrepreneurs and other creators, the wisdom within his book is valuable for anyone seeking to better themselves. Below are 35 quotes from the book that will aid you on your journey to become your true self and “make dents in the universe.”

35 quotes that will inspire, intrigue and invigorate from The Art of Being Unmistakable

Be honest. Be imperfect. Embrace your inner misfit.
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1. The only job security, to the extent that it exists, will reside in your ability to be “high concept high touch”: to come up with inspired and innovative ideas, gain creative insights, and connect with people on an emotional level through empathy, story or design. To do what computers can’t, or that dude in China or India for only so many dollars an hour. To create experiences that people didn’t know they wanted or needed but soon refuse to live without.

To turn your work — and perhaps life itself — into art, in a way that is unique to you and relevant to others. (pg. 8)

2. Our creations show the truth of who we are. They also shape how — or if — the world remembers us when we’re gone. (pg. 10)

3. Somewhere between what your soul knows and what the world wants you to know, is your choice about what kind of story you will live and how you will live it. (pg. 11)

Our creations show the truth of who we are.
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4. Nothing matters. That’s the key to unlocking the handcuffs that keep us imprisoned in worry, self-doubt, fear and disbelief. (pg. 15)

5. When we’re excessively concerned, we attach ourselves to outcomes, most of which are out of our control. As a result, our sense of who we are fluctuates based on the outcomes in our lives. None of these things define you as a person:

Your education
The size of your bank account
Your job title
Your failures
Your successes

And sadly, we let so many of these things rules our lives. (pgs. 15-16)

6. Obsession with crossing of the checkboxes of society’s life plan leads to little other than therapy, midlife crises, and depression. (pg. 16)

I think there is a fire burning in every one of us to make a dent in the universe.
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7. What would happen if you let your inner child be in charge for a while and let your outer adult sit on the bench? Imagine the beauty that would fill our world when people stop wasting their unique gifts on the pursuit of becoming somebody else. (pg. 18)

8. What would happen if we pursued being unmistakable instead of wildly successful by external measures?

Chances are you would piss some people off. However, you would also find the people who love you, look forward to hearing from you, and miss you when you are gone. This is the purest possible space you can create anything from, and yet fear and ego keep us from doing this. Instead, we play in a space of ego-based creation. (pg. 19)

9. I think there is a fire burning in every one of us to make a dent in the universe. But, it gets extinguished by the mediocre visions of those who defend the status quo encouraging us to be practical and realistic. (pgs. 21-22)

10. Comparison keeps you trapped in a competition of trying to win at the game of society’s life plan. (pg. 23)

11. I’ve realized that loss creates an opening in our lives. We can fill that space with fear, panic and anxiety. Or we can let it be open for creating something new, something that didn’t exist before. It can lead to something far better. (pg. 27)

Comparison keeps you trapped in a competition of trying to win at the game of society’s life plan.
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12. The point of loss isn’t to get back to where you were before the loss. It’s the chance to replace what was there with something much better. It’s an opportunity for reinvention, radical transformation and infinite possibility. (pg. 28)

13. My greatest sin was to waste my life believing that I wasn’t capable of something more. (pg. 35)

The point of loss isn’t to get back to where you were before the loss.
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14. If I were to use a map long enough, eventually I would become fearful of ditching it for a compass. However, if I want to do interesting work, take risks, and see what I am really made of, I have to be willing to use a compass instead of a map. The day I ditched the map for the compass is the day I walked off the edge of the Earth, and my work became an experience that only I can create for people. (pgs. 42-43)

15. Straight and narrow paths rarely lead to interesting destinations. (pg. 43)

16. If you try to mimic, copy, or emulate anybody else, at best you will be a pale imitation. (pg. 56)

17. …all the accolades that your ego gets its rocks off on are just by-products of creating from places where your ego loses its power. It is counterintuitive. (pgs. 59-60)

Straight and narrow paths rarely lead to interesting destinations.
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18. The ego needs to be fed to remain heathy, but if you overfeed it, it vomits all over every part of your life. In addition it is not the real YOU. (pg. 60)

19. My ego has led to my most spectacular downfalls, and has led to the pursuit of things in life that mattered to it far more than it mattered to me. (pg. 60)

20. Digging into the depths of your soul to find the REAL you is something that many people avoid because they are terrified of what they might find. In those depths are our dark parts, imperfections, flaws and inadequacies.

However, that is also where the things that makes me unmistakable and unforgettable lie. (pg. 65)

The ego needs to be fed to remain heathy, but if you overfeed it, it vomits all over…your life.
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21. …be open to possibilities, and what might come from being an explorer of the world instead of trying to be a [pre-insert career aspiration of your choice]. Consider whether it is even your choice, or is it one that was a by-product of your social programming? (pg. 70)

22. What would you choose to learn if there were no external rewards? What would you choose to learn if the only reward was a sense of self-fulfillment? That is where the ego disappears, art is created, and callings are found. (pg. 72)

23. Take something from inception to launch. Make what Peter Sims calls little bets. The final product might be terrible. However, in it you will find the 20% that might lead to something much bigger and better. The most valuable thing that could come from shipping a failure is what you will learn from it.  (pg. 76)

What would you choose to learn if there were no external rewards…only…self-fulfillment?
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24. To find that 20% of your life you consider worthy of mastery, figure out the 80% that is not. That usually lies within the things you would not do if somebody paid you a million dollars. If there is nothing you would not do for a million dollars, I do not know what to tell you. Set aside some of it for your future therapist. (pgs. 76-77)

25. Worrying about what other people think is a jail of our own creation, and the irony of it is those people are in the same jail with us. (pg. 78)

26. A system is only capable of producing what its rules dictate. We repeat history, in hopes of rewriting a better version. But when you abandon the system, you create something that doesn’t exist. You write history from scratch. You claim your birthright to change the world in some meaningful way, to make a dent in the universe. (pg. 86)

Worrying about what other people think is a jail of our own creation
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27. …I believe that it is every person’s birthright to make a dent in the universe. Most people just don’t claim it. Others search but can’t find it. Those who do it realize one thing. You won’t find it by trying to be better. You only find it by being different…That’s how you reach an unmistakable path. It’s the most counterintuitive thing in the world because you’ll be ridiculed and questioned, until a crowd gathers or as AJ Leon would say, you’ve stopped traffic. And when the crowd does gather they’ll drown out the voices of the critics, dream crushers and naysayers…The system is not designed to encourage this kind of behavior, but it’s only through a bit of intentional chaos we end up letting our imagination guide us to the places we might have never arrived. (pgs. 86-87)

A system is only capable of producing what its rules dictate.
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28. If you keep watering down your work to cater to the masses, eventually you will be washed away…You must let your soulprint mark your art. Explore the depths of your soul, the light parts, the dark parts, and even the questionable ones. Cross lines, personal and professional. That is the only way you’ll know where they are. It might be career suicide, or the only thing that saves your career in a world where the rewards for standing out outweigh the ones for fitting in. You must put the no-bull*hit version of you into how you show up in the world. It must permeate every cell of your body. It stops being something you do and it becomes who you are. (pgs. 89-90)

29. In a world where everybody has a voice, the only “personal brand” that will stand out is one that is honest, imperfect, vulnerable, and rough around the edges. When you polish anything too much, it loses the thing that makes it shine from within. Then we cannot trust it anymore. (pg. 104)

30. Be honest. Be imperfect. Embrace your inner misfit. (pg. 107)

Be honest. Be imperfect. Embrace your inner misfit.
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31. It is true that gatekeepers are dying. The opportunity to choose you, do something that matters, make dents in the universe and leave your soul print in the sand is more accessible than at any time in the history of western Civilization. (pg. 108)

32. Be your own gatekeeper, tastemaker, and connoisseur of what matters. Do not choose yourself so the gatekeepers will choose you. (pg. 111)

33. Most of the technology tools at our disposal are nothing more than a box of crayons. They give us an opportunity for self-expression. (pg. 112)

You get to say whether you live a life filled with meaning and purpose.
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34. Do not compromise the integrity of your art for the metrics that will temporarily inflate your ego. (pg. 116)

35. You are the final authority on it all. Your sign-off is the one that matters above all. You get to say whether you live a life filled with meaning and purpose. (pg. 123)

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