I’ve never been able to “fit in” with the crowd. It’s either I “stood out” or just “blended in.” Even when I was in high school, I never considered myself a jock even though I was one of the best throwers/runners on the team. I don’t know.. I just didn’t care for labels. I’ve always followed the Breakfast club (1985) theory, “Even if your a jock, recluse, cheerleader, or a brain, you’re still a regular person with everyday problems.”
I’ve lived with this model ever since I’ve studied stoicism and Early American Literature because just like you, I’d care too much about others opinions. I remember back in the day when I was 16, I tried out way too many styles. However, I could never distinguish which one was my own.
I tried being preppy and hanging out with the nerds which never suited me at all. It’s cool to be smart and all but being all smug about like Ben Shapiro or something, just isn’t cool to me; it’s just rude. After experiencing that crowd, I’d distance myself from those guys and gals because I just knew they weren’t right for me.
It’s funny because when I met my friends Nick, Marvin, Harley, and Clifford I didn’t initially fit in with them either. It was weird because we weren’t necessarily bullied but we weren’t necessarily popular either. I guess we were just there. I remember I tried to adapt emo culture and that really didn’t go by well. I’d wear these tight skinny jeans that just didn’t fit at all with this awkward wrist chain and chuck taylors. If only I had pictures. (On second thought.. I’m glad I don’t.)
After I became more relaxed with the guys I realized why I just fit in so well with them. Collectively ,we bounced individual ideas off of each other, we weren’t into fitting in, and also we just stopped caring. So thank God, I finally felt like I just dress in whatever I wanted. I’d ditch any of my preppy, emo, or gothic clothes and just wore regular clothes.
When you stop trying to impress others you’re finally able to relax and be yourself. It’s funny because now that I’m older I see so many people trying so hard to impress others as if they have to fit in. I’m so glad I realized as a young teenager, fitting in and impressing anyone is just overrated.
It’s something about that indifference to anyone’s opinion that just gives you a natural glow about yourself. Once you understand that people like vanilla ice cream, others prefer chocolate, and some just don’t like ice cream at all. You won’t constantly change your appearance, your authenticity, or any part of your own individuality to impress anyone.
If you have a problem with always worrying about someone’s opinion here is what you need to repeat daily, “If they like you, that’s cool, if they don’t like you that’s also cool. You can only be you and sometimes people will not gravitate towards you which is perfectly okay.”
Lastly, do not waste your time trying to figure everybody out. It’s impossible to live for others’ expectations and not your own. This way of thinking is a very easy way to die sooner and I’m sure you don’t want that. Remember, your only requirement is to just be yourself! No one else can do that but you.