Fitting In Is Overrated

Fitting In Is Overrated

Hint: It won't matter in the real world

As you leave high school, you are supposed to leave the social hierarchy. This unspoken thing that says some people are popular and some people are not. That is a high school mentality that unfortunately doesn't leave everyone when they begin or are in college. Some people still have that same mind set in their brains and it affects how they interact with others. They may be snobbish to some people or scared to talk to some people depending on whether they were the popular kid or the "geek". But college isn't supposed to be like that. It is supposed to be a place where you can let go of who you were prior and start fresh. It's the place where you begin to realize that in the real world, no one cares if you were popular in high school. No one cares about anything you did in high school because it was just high school. It was four years of your life that felt long while you were in them, but that move quicker than you could imagine. College is the same thing. No matter how long you were in college, it has a beginning and an end. All the problems you thought were so monumental, will be trivial when you're an actual adult with kids of your own.

In saying this, I would like to point out that the whole dynamic of being popular or not, stems from "fitting in". The popular kids usually dressed the best, they knew everything about pop culture as it related to them. They seemed to fit into any situation with little effort and with ease. While the unpopular kids had a harder time trying to relate. They didn't like the same things the other kids liked. They were individuals. News Flash: The unpopular kids were on to something!

Fitting in with the crowd is overrated. The most popular people in the world (I'm talking celebrity status) are people who don't fit in. Who think outside the box and change up the status quo. People who aren't afraid to be different and actually relish in the fact that they are different. There's nothing wrong with being in a group of people that like the same things, that's usually how you make friends. I'm not saying we should all like different things and disagree on everything. I'm not even saying there is something wrong with being popular. My argument is that people should not be isolated because they are different. People should not be lead to feel they are less than because they don't fit in.

I sometimes feel I don't fit in with my generation. I'm not into all the same things and I think differently. I joke that I'm a 40-year-old woman trapped in the body of a 21-year-old. Even my grandmother once told me I act as if I've been on this planet before like this is my second go at life. I don't know if I believe that, but I sometimes wonder what's wrong with me. Because I'm different from other 21-year-olds. But then I think, I'm a product of my environment and have begun developing my own philosophies about life. This doesn't mean there is something wrong with me, but because I sometimes feel isolated for my behavior, I will question myself. This isn't fair. No one questions the people who do whatever it seems like they are supposed to do. No one thinks they are strange for fitting in. It's perfectly normal to be like everyone else. But the people that stand out, they are often looked down upon.

Now before anyone gets mad, this is not an article looking down on the people who fit in. I'm not trying to say there is something wrong with you. We are all entitled to our own personalities, likes and dislikes, I am only trying to point out that fitting in isn't the only way to live. If a person is fine following the trends of society in whatever way that means, if they are doing it because they get actual enjoyment from it and not because they fear they will be called a loser or lose their friends, then, by all means, do that. But don't make the people who are their own trendsetters feel bad for what they like. In this world, we can't all be the same. Life would be boring. It would be like having a room with all on color in it. Or having to eat the same food everyday for the rest of your life. It's not fun. We need people to shake things up and add variety to life. Spice it up. Be different. And know there's nothing wrong with you whether you follow the crowd or not.

When you graduate and join the work force. When you have bills to pay and kids to feed. When you have actual life problems to solve and not just finals and who unfollowed you, when you're an actual adult and college is far behind you, you won't care about the trivial things that plagued your younger years. None of the fitting in or not fitting in will matter in the large scheme of things so I offer this suggestion. Get a jump start on that mentality now. Stop caring about whether you do or you don't. Hang out with people who don't make you question that and know that who you are is exactly who you are supposed to be.

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It's Time To Thank Your First Roommate

Not the horror story kind of roommate, but the one that was truly awesome.

Nostalgic feelings have recently caused me to reflect back on my freshman year of college. No other year of my life has been filled with more ups and downs, and highs and lows, than freshman year. Throughout all of the madness, one factor remained constant: my roommate. It is time to thank her for everything. These are only a few of the many reasons to do so, and this goes for roommates everywhere.

You have been through all the college "firsts" together.

If you think about it, your roommate was there through all of your first college experiences. The first day of orientation, wishing you luck on the first days of classes, the first night out, etc. That is something that can never be changed. You will always look back and think, "I remember my first day of college with ____."

You were even each other's first real college friend.

You were even each other's first real college friend.

Months before move-in day, you were already planning out what freshman year would be like. Whether you previously knew each other, met on Facebook, or arranged to meet in person before making any decisions, you made your first real college friend during that process.

SEE ALSO: 18 Signs You're A Little Too Comfortable With Your Best Friends

The transition from high school to college is not easy, but somehow you made it out on the other side.

It is no secret that transitioning from high school to college is difficult. No matter how excited you were to get away from home, reality hit at some point. Although some people are better at adjusting than others, at the times when you were not, your roommate was there to listen. You helped each other out, and made it through together.

Late night talks were never more real.

Remember the first week when we stayed up talking until 2:00 a.m. every night? Late night talks will never be more real than they were freshman year. There was so much to plan for, figure out, and hope for. Your roommate talked, listened, laughed, and cried right there with you until one of you stopped responding because sleep took over.

You saw each other at your absolute lowest.

It was difficult being away from home. It hurt watching relationships end and losing touch with your hometown friends. It was stressful trying to get in the swing of college level classes. Despite all of the above, your roommate saw, listened, and strengthened you.

...but you also saw each other during your highest highs.

After seeing each other during the lows, seeing each other during the highs was such a great feeling. Getting involved on campus, making new friends, and succeeding in classes are only a few of the many ways you have watched each other grow.

There was so much time to bond before the stresses of college would later take over.

Freshman year was not "easy," but looking back on it, it was more manageable than you thought at the time. College only gets busier the more the years go on, which means less free time. Freshman year you went to lunch, dinner, the gym, class, events, and everything else possible together. You had the chance to be each other's go-to before it got tough.

No matter what, you always bounced back to being inseparable.

Phases of not talking or seeing each other because of business and stress would come and go. Even though you physically grew apart, you did not grow apart as friends. When one of you was in a funk, as soon as it was over, you bounced right back. You and your freshman roommate were inseparable.

The "remember that one time, freshman year..." stories never end.

Looking back on freshman year together is one of my favorite times. There are so many stories you have made, which at the time seemed so small, that bring the biggest laughs today. You will always have those stories to share together.

SEE ALSO: 15 Things You Say To Your Roommates Before Going Out

The unspoken rule that no matter how far apart you grow, you are always there for each other.

It is sad to look back and realize everything that has changed since your freshman year days. You started college with a clean slate, and all you really had was each other. Even though you went separate ways, there is an unspoken rule that you are still always there for each other.

Your old dorm room is now filled with two freshmen trying to make it through their first year. They will never know all the memories that you made in that room, and how it used to be your home. You can only hope that they will have the relationship you had together to reflect on in the years to come.

Cover Image Credit: Katie Ward

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To The High School Senior Wishing She Could Fast-Forward To Graduation, Careful What You Wish For

Don't wish this time away.


As the last stretch of my freshman year of college stands before me, I've been thinking a lot about where I was a year ago today. I've thought about how fast the time has gone, but also how much has happened in that year.

A year ago, I decided what college I was going to and was getting ready to graduate, and honestly counting down the days until graduation. Senior year was almost over, and I couldn't wait to walk across that stage, get my diploma, and FINALLY get to start my real life. However, now that it's a year later I honestly barely remember all those little moments and it feels like literally a world ago when I was in my high school and making my Senior Board full of pictures of my childhood. And part of me wishes that I hadn't wished all that time away.

So, to my high school seniors out there — I encourage you to cherish all the memories you are making. I encourage you to spend time with your parents and savor the meals you have with them and enjoy the conversations where your mom asks all the mom questions about your day, and your dad tells a story from his childhood that you've heard a million times before. I encourage you to appreciate the friends you have, and whether or not you plan to stay friends with them after graduation, be grateful for the time with them in this season and the role that they played in your life.

I ask you to look around your high school, stop and stare at the walls that you've probably been praying to get out of for a few months now and appreciate the memories and times you've had in those buildings. Whether or not high school was a great time for you or a bad time, it was a time of growth and the place where you matured and made mistakes and succeeded.

Seniors, enjoy these last few months because before you know it you'll blink and it will be a year later and you'll be miss those days that you complained about, those teachers you rolled your eyes at, and those friends that you shared that time with.

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