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The Payless Prank

By: Michael Blankenship |

“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” 

– George Bernard Shaw

Will people spend $500 on Payless shoes that are typically just $20? 

Obviously not. 

Well… unless they don’t know they’re Payless shoes… and if the shoes are, perhaps, re-branded as luxury footwear under a name like, say, Palessi? 

In a marketing stunt, Payless did just that. 

And in this 4-minute video, you can see how people’s perception of the same shoes changed when Payless presented itself as Palessi

When I watched that video, I couldn’t help but think about how this same thing happens in our personal and professional lives — people perceive us however we present ourselves

In fact, if you want to present yourself better… so that you’re seen better… here are some things you should do more (or less) of…

Apologize Less — Don’t be someone who apologizes for things that don’t require apologies. If it was incidental, or if your intent wasn’t to do harm, then there’s no reason to say you’re sorry. You can acknowledge the situation. But don’t say you’re sorry just to please others. 

Stand Up Straight — Good posture isn’t just about physical health. It’s a non-verbal communication that indicates confidence, competence, and attentiveness. When you stand up straight, you project an image of self-assurance and dignity. And these are qualities that people respect and respond to positively.

Offer Your Opinion — Your opinion is just as valuable as anyone else’s. So offer it. 

Say “No” — Knowing when and how to say no is a powerful skill. It shows that you value your time, your limits, and yourself. Not everything requires your participation.

Groom Yourself — A well-groomed appearance is more than just looking good for the sake of vanity. It’s about respect for yourself. It suggests that you take pride in your personal care and that you understand the importance of making a positive first impression.

Avoid Losers — Don’t spend time with people who belittle you or who see life as struggle rather than opportunity. You are too valuable to be subconsciously influenced by negative individuals. 

Take Action — Ideas are great, but action defines us. It demonstrates that you’re not just a dreamer but a doer.

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