This Says It All

Writer to Frank Zappa: Have there been parts of your life that you’ve felt you’ve neglected because you’ve been absorbed in your music?

Zappa: Well what am I missing? Do I regret not going horse-back riding, or learning how to water ski? Well, no. I don’t want to climb mountains. I don’t want to do bungie-jumping. I haven’t missed any of these things. If you’re absorbed by something, what’s to miss?


Driving For Lyft Or Uber. Which Is Better?

There’s tons of momentum picking up in the ride-sharing community right now. People are falling in love with the idea that they can pull out their smartphone at any given time, tap a button, and within a few minutes a friendly driver will come to their location, pick them up, and take them to wherever they need to go, all while doing it at an affordable rate. Real-time rides on demand. It’s such a beautiful thing.

Lately though many people have been getting curious and have started asking me, “So which one do you like driving for better… Uber or Lyft?”

Well, before I answer that question let me start by saying that I think both of these companies are absolutely incredible. No doubt about it in any way, shape, or form. The technology they have both harnessed is the best thing to happen in a long, long time. They are both leading the charge and laying the groundwork to make this type of service accessible to just about every human being on the planet. Putting up either of them next to a standard old-fashioned cab service is by no means any real comparison. Anyone that’s ever used either service knows that they are both light years ahead of any other taxi company out there. With that being said, after about 6 months of working with both I have come up with some fairly concrete conclusions about the differences I see between the two of them.

Overall, when it comes to the comparison of Uber and Lyft, I think it’s a matter of personal preference for which one is really “better”. They both have their own strengths and weaknesses and are overall about 90% the same when it comes to the technology that they both use, but when it comes to terms of driver to passenger interaction and driver to company interaction, there are some really huge differences.

In my opinion the biggest difference between both companies is the overall vibe you get when picking up either a Uber or Lyft rider. They are somehow, for the most part, completely different human beings. I have a theory as to why this is. I believe it’s because of the way the companies are marketed and the different type of customers that they both attract. The second an Uber customer opens the application to request a ride they see the big slogan stretched across the screen that says “EVERYONE’S PRIVATE DRIVER”. This puts these people in a sort of pain-in-my-ass frame of mind. “Oh yes! My PRIVATE chauffeur is on his way to pick me up! I am a prestigious prince/princess! He better have the lobster ready with a side of melted butter and the champagne on ice when I arrive!” Now clearly I’m exaggerating a little, but I’m not too far off in how these people act! They LOVE the idea of being chauffeured around like royalty. This completely makes sense, being that the company does offer a high end black car or SUV service that these riders have probably used before, but that’s just not what I offer. I drive as an UberX, Peer-To-Peer, rideshare partner. I am a normal human being who will pick you up in my ultra-basic Mazda3 who wants to drive around other normal humans and have real conversations. I don’t want to kiss anyones ass or bend over backwards to do anything out of the ordinary.

With that being said, I still go WAY above the call of duty when operating by keeping my car detailed every day, grooming/bathing myself regularly, effectively communicating with the passengers as to where they want to go, offering them bottled water, a phone charge, and an auxiliary cable if they want to listen to their own music. This is whether it’s an Uber or Lyft passenger. It’s just the way that I run my business. Equal treatment across the board. What you see is what you get.

Over to Lyft. Their slogan is “Your Friend With A Car!”. To me, this puts the passenger in a much more pleasant frame of mind. “Oh awesome! My new friend Jamie is coming to pick me up!” Right from the get go they usually hop in the front seat and are in a chipper, upbeat mood. “Hey, Jamie! How’s it going?!” then we fist bump, exchange a few friendly words, and we’re on our way to wherever they want to go while continuing an upbeat, positive conversation. With Uber they always get in the back seat and hardly ever want to talk. It’s usually and attitude of “Shut the fuck up, you lowly little bastard! Get me to where I want to go RIGHT NOW! You better know the entire city like the back of your hand without using GPS, too! Oh, you don’t know where the XYZ Club is at and you want to type it into GOOGLE MAPS? You’re getting a 1-Star rating from me!” Where with Lyft I get more of the vibe of “Oh, it’s all good! You’re new to this city? Welcome! We’ll figure this thing out together!” Ahh, so much less stressful!

Perfect example. I moved to NYC a few months ago and became a driver in New Jersey for both companies. Within one week my rating with Uber dropped to 4.5 stars, right on the verge of being removed from their driver network, while my rating with Lyft remained at a steady 4.98 stars. Hmmm… Same Jamie, same car, same level of service, same EVERYTHING, but these Uber riders obviously just didn’t think that I was up to speed for their epicurean standards.

This overall vibe transfers over to my interaction with both companies management as well. When I email Uber about anything, they usually take about 3 or 4 days to get back to me and when they do it’s usually an extremely short, cold message that doesn’t have any heart to it. Feels like I’m talking to a machine or something. When I email Lyft they usually email me back by the next day and are always super warm, friendly, and want to make sure that all of my needs have been met. Overall, when it comes to driver support, I just feel that Uber doesn’t really give a damn, as if I’m just another cog in their gigantic money making wheel, while the people at Lyft talk to me like a real human being and make me feel that I’m truly being taken care of like a family member. I love that.

While on the subject of family, that’s what I truly feel that Lyft is all about. It’s all about making new connections whether it’s with a new passenger, someone in management, or another driver. For example, Lyft has a drivers lounge on Facebook where drivers can come together and share their stories from the road, get to know one another, and throw out ideas for opportunities to hang out and party. Lyft people really take the time to get to know one another! I was driving around the other night and a car pulls up to me and says “Hey, what’s up, Jamie!” I was very confused at first, but turns out it was another driver who saw me driving around on the app and he just wanted to come over and introduce himself. So kind. I’ve never felt that way with an Uber driver. Uber is all about separation and minding your own business at all times, with no drivers coming together to interact at all. For some anti-social people that might be preferred, but not always for me. I met an Uber driver about a week ago at the gas station and he clearly didn’t want to get to know me. All he did was nod his head and walk away after I introduced myself. Hmm.

So again, I still think that both of these companies are awesome in that they are making the way for an incredible, much needed transportation service to be provided to the world, but when it comes right down to it which company am I rooting for? Lyft! All the way, every day, baby!

Why? For the most part, I just get a feeling of The Dark Side surrounding Uber. They want to dominate the market and will plow down and resort to outright scandalous measures to remove anything that gets in their way. This article should give you an idea of the type of people they are: READ IT HERE. Where as with Lyft, yes they are a for-profit business and want to do well for themselves and their drivers, but I just don’t get the negative, evil vibes from them that I do with Uber. I’m totally feeling the love with Lyft!

If you’re curious about becoming a driver with Lyft you can email me at jamiesimko@gmail.com or call/text me at +1.951.348.8442. I would be happy to answer any questions that you might have and show you everything I know about how to run a successful ridesharing business.

Have a great day!

- Jamie

Interested In Driving For Lyft or Uber?

Due to the high volume of requests for advice/consulting lately I’ve decided to ramp up my efforts and focus more of my time and energy as a recruiter & field trainer with Lyft & Uber.

Have you considered becoming a driver with us for earning either a part-time or full-time income? Let me know. I’ve got this thing dialed in and will personally take the time to train and mentor you for free. (yes, picture me saying this on an infomercial :) ) I’ll save you the time, energy, & money that I wasted over my first few months by trying to figure it out by myself.

Call or text me at 1.951.348.8442 if you’re interested.

- Jamie

Making Way For Better Things

I was going through my closet a few days ago taking inventory of all the clothing I have floating around in there. Some of these items I really like, but there’s also a few things that I know I really don’t like at all. I mean, they’re okay, but I don’t really like them. For example, there’s this one light blue button up shirt in there that’s been staring at me for the last six months. It’s okay. I actually wore it last week, but only because all the other shirts that I really wanted to wear were dirty. I keep this blue shirt in there as a “backup” for when the other shirts that I really like aren’t available. There’s nothing wrong with this shirt; It’s actually really nice! It’s clean, in good condition, and fits me pretty well. I just really don’t like wearing it for some reason. I hate seeing it on my body. Maybe it’s the color, or the way the collar fits around my neck, or something else that I just can’t pinpoint, but when I wear it I just feel like a complete idiot.

I finally had enough the other day. I took the blue shirt and all the other clothing in there that I didn’t like anymore and gave them away to a friend that I knew would love them. Sure enough, he was ecstatic and extremely grateful. Ah! Now I’ve got a nice clean open space ready for some fresh threads. The next day I stumbled across a really great site that had a wonderful sale on some nice new clothing that I truly fell in love with. I took the time to really analyze these items and make sure what I was looking at was really resonating with me and that I wasn’t just acting on impulse before I made any decisions. Once I made up my mind I went ahead and bought them.

There. Nice and new. Stuff I really like. No more harboring anything anything that is no longer serving me.

Isn’t it funny how we hold onto certain things even though we know we really don’t want them in our lives anymore? The reality is that I was tightly hanging onto that undesirable blue shirt because I was afraid that if I got rid of it I might not get anything better and would be left there empty handed. NONSENSE, POOPY-PANTS! There’s always something better waiting for you if you’ll just make the space for it.

There are things in your life that you are hanging on to right now that you don’t want to let go of even though you know you should. It could be an old pair of shoes, that stack of newspapers by the door, a negative person who’s been dragging you down for years, or maybe just some resentful feelings you’ve been harboring deep within yourself.

Set it all free. You’re ready for something new and improved. It’s time to make the space in your life for the things that you truly LOVE and get rid of all that old stuff that’s been jamming your lifestyle up. You deserve better. :)

- Jamie

Why NYC?

A friend asked me why I am moving to NYC the other day. Here was my response.

Man, so many reasons…

First off, the culture and people out there are simply amazing. Some of the most genuinely kind and authentic people you will ever meet in my humble opinion. There’s just a certain type of excitement and buzz in the air that really resonates deep within my soul every time I visit. Plus the women are absolutely stunning. It’s not uncommon to be walking down the street and catch myself saying “Wow! I think that was the most breathtaking woman I’ve ever seen” at least 10-20 times per day. Me and my friend Alex have a thing where we’re constantly glancing at each other saying “YEP” when this happens.

Secondly, I am in the market for an entirely new set of challenges in life. SD life is almost too perfect, from it’s ridiculously good weather, easy going pace of life, abundance of taco shops, and relatively low cost of living, but I know that it’s not making me the type of person that I am capable of becoming. I am just way too comfortable out here and that really just scares the crap out of me.

I want to be engaged in an environment surrounded with like-minded creative people who are headed in the direction that I want to go. This will inspire a greater sense of intensity into my daily activity to aggressively pursue the things I’m after.

I guess to sum it up I am a little bored and looking for a vibrant new experience in life. I know that living in NYC is going to be much more difficult than SD, from it’s sky high rent prices, ridiculous weather, and the millions of people that will be rubbing their filthy bodies all over me and completely jamming me up every day, but I am certain that it’s going to make me a much better man. Whether I choose to stay there permanently or not I know that I will be much happier in the long run knowing that I at least gave it a shot and because of that my life will forever be all that much more interesting.

- Jamie

A Simple Guide To Making Money As An UberX Driver

What in the heck even is Uber?

If I could define it simply I would say that it is a personal transportation service much like a taxi, except instead of being driven around up by a “taxi driver” you’re picked and driven to your destination by an everyday average person who is looking to make extra money (or a full time income) with their own personal vehicle.

Why would I want to use this rather than a regular taxi?

A few reasons:

1. It costs less than a taxi.
2. It’s more convenient.
3. The drivers are friendly.
4. Their cars are kept clean.

How does it work?

It’s simple. All that’s required on the drivers part is a few things:

1. A valid drivers license.
2. An insured vehicle that is 2004 or newer. (and not hammered looking)
3. A clean driving record and no criminal history. (We’re all given background checks)

And for the riders:

1. A smartphone to run the Uber app.
2. A valid credit/debit card to keep on file.

If you’re looking to get picked up all you need to do is fire up the Uber app, punch in your coordinates, and click “request UberX”. Usually the driver will be there to pick you up in less than 5-10 minutes. (Keep in mind it’s currently only available in larger metropolitan areas.)

Who’s a good candidate to be a driver?

1. Night owls. Depending on the city you live in you’ll make the most money at night from 6pm - 2am. This is great for me because I hate getting up early and I’m always wide awake at night.
2. Social people. It’s a great way to meet new people.
3. Ability to handle assholes. Not gonna lie, a chunk of the people you will be driving around will be drunken idiots. Luckily for me, I’ve been dealing with people like this for years so it’s no big deal to me.
4. People who want to work whenever they want.

How do I become a driver?

Easy. All you need to do is submit an application. Talk to me if you’re interested and I will write you up a referral with the company and help you with getting started right. You can email me at jamiesimko@gmail.com or call me at 1.951.348.8442. It usually takes a few weeks to process everything. Once you’re approved they will send you a special iPhone that runs the UberX application for you to mount on your dashboard.

Sweet! So how do I make the most money with this thing?

These are the key areas of importance:

1. Keep your car spic-n-span.
2. Learn your city inside and out.
3. Work whenever you want. Some hours are busier than others, which will affect how much money you make.
4. Be kind to your riders. Seriously, this is huge! Offer them bottled water and an auxiliary cable to listen to their own music when they hop in. Many people have given me an extra tip just for taking the time to go the extra mile in this area.
5. Work when you’re feeling good. Nobody wants to be driven around by someone who’s in a bad mood.

Gee golly gosh! That’s great! How much can I make doing this?

Well, I only go out at the times I described, but after paying for gasoline I average anywhere from $20 to $25 per hour.

Wowzuhs! Anything else I should know?

Just give it a shot! I suggest anyone to do this at least a couple nights a week. You’ll learn your city better than ever and you’ll meet a ton of cool people along the way! :)

- Jamie

Note: I earn a small referral bonus for every person that I recruit to drive with the company. This money helps free up more of my time and energy to spend on consulting & field training for new drivers like you.

What I Learned About Myself Through Selling Cars

In March of 2013 I moved to San Diego. I had no real plan for what I was going to be doing once I got there, I just knew that I needed to start making some money. If I didn’t I would soon be living on the side of the road in my hammered ‘93 Toyota Camry. That didn’t sound too appealing to me.

With no real concrete sense of direction and all of my other prospects for gainful employment falling though, all it really took was a simple suggestion from my older and more successful cousin Josh for me to go out and get myself a job selling cars. “Go sell some cars, that’ll be great for ya!” he said, and I was on my way…

So I begin.

From the get go I start selling like crazy (it was tax return season) and I’m making money, way more money than I’ve ever made before, and it feels great! I immediately start thinking about all the new stuff I want to start jamming into my life and I go out and start spending like a full-blown ass hat. It was pretty sweet! The power to buy the things I thought I really wanted was a great experience.

So I’m chugging along for the next few months making the big bags of cash thinking I’ve got it all figured out. Then something happens: I get sick, really sick, and I fall into a deep exhaustion that I can’t seem to break myself out of. At this point I feel so lousy that my sales numbers start to drop. “What is happening to me?” I wondered…

I was burning myself out.

What I realized was that I became so focused on making money that I began to neglect the other three other extremely important components of my life: my health, relationships, and creative outlets. All of my time was being spent at work and it was really bumming me out. I felt horrible that I was beginning to lose my sense of identity by becoming so committed to something that wasn’t even that important to me in the first place.

Money isn’t everything.

We’ve all heard it said before, but it’s absolutely true. Money in of itself will never make you happy. The things you can do with money, to a certain extent can bring a sense of happiness, especially if those things are related to food, shelter, clothing, and contribution, but chasing after money for money’s sake will never bring you deep and lasting fulfillment and happiness. My cousin Ryan actually summed it quite perfectly when he told me “Money is never going to make you happy, but lack of it will make you absolutely miserable.”

So I began to calm myself down and catalogue the things that I truly desired in life. It really wasn’t much! Most of the things I wanted were actually free! What I desired more than anything was free time. I really just wanted my life back!

Walking away.

I started to realize that selling cars was never in a million years going to give me the lifestyle that I wanted so I went ahead and put my two week notice in and walked away from the profession all together.

Gaining clarity.

Walking into that job I really had no idea of what I was getting into. Even though it wasn’t really my cup of tea in the long run it definitely gave me clarity towards the things that I truly want in life. Making a ton of money with no time to enjoy it is definitely no longer on the list. Once I figured that out I simply stated my intention for what desired, took a few simple actions, and it all somehow magically fell into place from there.

I’m now doing work that’s allowing for the lifestyle I want and I have the free time to focus on the things that are truly important to me like becoming a healthier human being, traveling the globe, spending time with people I love, and expressing myself through various creative outlets such as this blog.

I can honestly say that I am much happier and I will never go back to living like that again. If you never have the time to enjoy the money you earn what good is it anyway? :)

- Jamie

Getting Back

I can’t remember the last time that I simply sat down with a clear mind to write my thoughts out. To capture the essence of where I’m at in life so that I can track the progress of where I’ve been and where I what I want to head towards.

Here we go.