You Don’t Always Have To Be A Dick

Shutterstock/solominviktor
Shutterstock/solominviktor

For a long time, I was naïve (and conceited) enough to think there was no one like me. I thought, “I could not possibly write an article, for no one could EVEER relate to it!”

I blame this false sense of reality on being an only child. I thought I was so unique and different. A girl who could possibly be an inspiration to God himself…ok I’ll rein it in. But really, I had this disillusioned sense that no one could possibly be like me.

Then, at about 21, I realized that I was not so unlike everyone else, I was just actively trying not to be. But not and in artsy, “I have all these unique ideas in my head” thing, but more in a “I’m too cool for this” thing. And the further back I stepped from myself, the more I realized…I’m not different, I’m a dick.

I used to be quite dorky in middle school and I got made fun of a few times, so to cope with this I did a complete 180 and decided I would start making fun of people instead. Healthy, I know. In order to make myself appear cool, I would actively hate on what everybody else found enjoyable. I was an asshole who got off on making people feel bad about the things they actually liked, and in this act I was denying myself of every guilty or not so guilty pleasure I actually enjoyed.

No wonder people didn’t like me in high school! It wasn’t my braces or the very wobbly brown eyeliner that graced only my lower lash line, it was actually me. The few people that found me cool were the ones that either:

1. Found this asshole behavior amusing but they were ALSO assholes.
OR
2. Also actively hated everything because they were ALSO assholes.

It was finally, at 21, that I vowed to change EVERYTHING.

Day two of my sudden self realization made me realize that changing EVERYTHING may have been a bit ambitious. Also, unnecessary. There were things about me that were inherently good, I really did like people, I had just worked for so many years creating this badass façade that people (I thought) would respect. So I took it task by task. When I found myself immediately scoffing at the things people liked I would attempt to take a minute and at least try it myself. To be totally honest, some of it was still pretty painful.

But the more I tried, the more I found that I actually loved a lot of stuff! That was not what surprised me the most, however. It was how people never judged me. Not to pat myself on the back, but people liked the new me. The Justin Bieber loving, Forever 21 shopping, girl who was not afraid to interact with anyone; even if they were wearing Uggs in public.

Don’t get me wrong, I was still sarcastic and could cut anyone down with a single insult, but I didn’t feel the need to anymore. Even the friends that I had wrangled while I was still trying so hard to be “cool” still liked me, and possibly even more. They didn’t care that I fell for so much click bait that my computer had a virus that made it slower than a wounded turtle. I was still the person I was before, just a little more accepting.

So for all the girls out there who were like me, give it up. The mean girl who picked on you for liking choir back then is probably far, far away, drowning in an attempt to keep up appearances while battling inherent self-loathing. Trying to hate everyone and everything is exhausting and people will love you no matter what you love. For those of you who are worried about being deemed “basic,” fear not. You are not defined by your love of Nicki Minaj or your four pairs of Lululemon yoga pants.

Honestly, who gives a flying fuck? As cheesy as it seems, people like people who like themselves. You have so much more to offer than what you are pigeonholed into, and liking the occasional pumpkin spice latte will not hinder your ability to eventually take over the world. In the words of one of my new favorite bands, One Direction, “Nobody can drag me down.” Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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