If you're finally done feeling like you don't belong, then you're in the right place.
I get it.
You don’t fit in. You feel like an outsider.
It isn’t that you necessarily want to fit in and be like everyone else.
You’re just trying to shed the feeling that you’re misunderstood and unwelcomed.
But instead, you feel trapped in a life you don’t want.
Do you experience any of the following?
- Feel like an outcast no matter where you are.
- Resist rules, standards, and social norms, yet compare yourself to others.
- Fantasize about living another life. You feel like you should be somewhere else doing something else.
- Feel conflicted and struggle to make decisions.
- Often feel misunderstood. People treat you as if you are just like one of them when you are putting on a front and trying to adapt.
- Overcompensate and go overboard meeting expectations to avoid feeling judged, controlled, or criticized.
- Secretly feel ashamed and guilty of not fitting in. Or, you feel anxious and worried wondering if you are lacking something.
- Feel like you are looping and getting nowhere in life. Do you ever ask yourself, “What am I doing wrong?”
- Feel suffocated like you are constantly being put in a box, which makes you want to get away.
Maybe you’ve already tried a few things to fix feeling this way, get over your frustrating situations and find a life that you feel you should be living.
Maybe you have changed your jobs, your hobbies, and social circles. Or, maybe you even moved to a different city (in my case, different countries!)
But you feel trapped. You still can’t get away from a world you don’t fit in.
You do your best to manage the situation. You hide your struggles and put on a facade for your friends, colleagues, and those closest to you.
You’re the one who always has to adapt or change, which winds up making you feel resentful. The “hidden” you still seeps out slowly from behind the facade anyways.
While your effort might help a little bit, you know it’s still like putting a band-aid on a machete wound.
Because at the end of the day, real change comes when you bravely tackle the root cause that keeps you trapped in the world that you don’t belong.
I have felt like you do.
And it didn’t only last years – it lasted decades.
They say in Japan “The nail that sticks out gets hammered.”
Maybe I was that nail and maybe I wasn’t… but it surely felt like I was being hammered growing up there.
I didn’t fit in. I always felt anxious, uncomfortable, and unwanted no matter where I went. I tried my best to push through and ignore how I felt and waited for the day I could leave home.
I just knew the world outside the small town in Japan was going to offer the experience and the opportunities I was hungry for.
But life wasn’t that simple.
Years after I left Japan, having lived in Europe and settling in the US, I was still struggling. I simply couldn’t shake the feeling that I didn’t fit in. I felt out of place and misunderstood whether I was at work or out with people.
I hated my life despite pretending to be OK on the outside. I was desperate to stop living the life of a person I didn’t want to be.
I felt alone. Even if I tried to explain my problems to someone, they wouldn’t understand. They would end up giving me unsolicited advice that felt like criticism. I was different and they didn’t get it. Why bother telling them how I feel?
For years, I would wake up in the middle of the night scared that this was just going to continue for my entire life.
I would lay in bed with a gut-wrenching dread of time, and life, passing by while I struggled to get past the hopelessness I felt.
And this may have been the only time I admitted to myself (let alone others) of the desperation and the fears I felt. The thought of never experiencing the life I wanted also scared me. To me it was a certain death of a big part of myself.
However, I wasn’t aware (and was shocked) by the extent of its impact on me, especially because fitting in wasn’t something I wanted and I was trying to focus on my own life.
I kept asking myself: “What am I missing?”
One day I was walking home from work and saw my reflection in the windows of a building.
I looked miserable.
I was tired. I was disappointed. I couldn’t even recognize myself.
There was no hiding how I felt inside. Anybody could tell how awful I felt no matter how much I pretended to be enthusiastic and motivated.
I decided to face my challenge head-on then and there.
Wanting to change my situation, I completed my first coaching program in 2014 and then started on a different kind of personal development journey: NLP Coaching.
The biggest turning point came when I learned to work with different aspects of ourselves to create a deep and lasting change.
And I will tell you this:
Sometimes we are afraid and purposely turn a blind eye to the parts of ourselves that hold the key to unlocking the doors that will take us to the other side.
But only when you finally look at the parts of yourself that you’ve been avoiding can you forge a path away from the life you don’t want and claim the life you really want to have.
The question is not "Do I fit in?"
It is "Who am I and how do I want to live my life?"
Your life can change.
Now, I no longer struggle with the feeling that I don’t belong. I learned what it means to be myself, how to communicate honestly with people (and without being a jerk!), expressed myself openly, and connected with people who valued and appreciated who I was and what I could do. I can wholeheartedly appreciate my individualistic nature and know that I am not alone.
I know how you are feeling because I’ve been there myself.
And you may think this won’t work like for you like it did for me. But you can gain the insights and skills to get there.
Change is not only possible – quite frankly, it is vital for your well-being and happiness.
You deserve better than living a pretend life while inside you just feel constant stress, worries, and misery.
ALL human beings have the right to fulfill their potential and live life for themselves. It isn’t only for a few lucky people. I truly believe that.
If you are struggling, know that there is a better way.
And know that you don’t need to do this alone.
I look forward to hearing from you!