In school, I felt like an outsider.
I saw how others connected and had a great time, while I struggled.
Take the other guys in my class for example. I often worried that they were making fun of me behind my back and it felt like it was them inside and then me outside. (We’ve written an article about how to spot a fake friend from a real friend over here.)
One day, a new guy came to class. After a week, he was closer with my classmates than I was after a year.
That “proved it” to me: There’s definitely something wrong with me!
Like I’ve said before, I don’t regret that time, because that’s what formed who I am today.
I just wish I knew this back then:
Just because something is in a certain way, doesn’t mean it will always be that way.
You see, back then everything felt pretty dark to me. I had low self-esteem, so I didn’t believe that I would be able to turn things around.
I had good times, too, and I did have some friends.
It was just that being off socially and seeing others hit it off when I didn’t make me think less of myself.
I had little hopes I would improve.
I could rationally see that practice makes perfect, but it FELT like there was something wrong with me and it FELT like this was how life would be.
Here’s what I’ve learned after all these years: It doesn’t matter what it FEELS like. Sometimes, you just have to do what you know is right even if feels like it won’t work out.
These photos sum up my life today. To me, they prove that just because you felt like an outsider, it doesn’t mean it will always be that way.
How did your childhood affect your social beliefs today? Did you worry about people making fun of you behind your back? Let me know in the comments!