18 Reasons You Feel Like You Don’t Belong Anywhere

Feeling like you don’t belong anywhere can feel incredibly isolating. We need companionship to keep us connected to the world, so if you’re struggling to form relationships and don’t feel that you don’t fit in, here are 18 reasons why that might be.

You Lack Identity

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Identity gives you a sense of self, autonomy, and purpose. If you feel like you don’t belong anywhere, it could be because you don’t know who you are and what you’re supposed to be doing. Self-confidence goes a long way when trying to fit in, but you need your own identity.

You Had a Tough Childhood

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Childhood trauma has massive psychological impacts, even when you’ve grown up. PsychCentral reports that people who experienced tough childhoods struggle to form emotional bonds due to toxic, abusive, or neglectful relationships, usually with parents. Getting help for this is difficult, but it will encourage you to find a new place to belong.

You’re Too Independent

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Independence is an essential life skill, but there is such a thing as being too independent. Humans can function alone, but we prefer to have support when times get tough. If you’re independent to the point you never let anyone in, you’ll struggle to find your place in society and feel isolated.

You’ve Been Bullied

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Like childhood neglect, past bullying can also make it hard for people to engage meaningfully with others. Fear of being hurt or ostracized due to bullying forces you to keep society at arm’s length. However, not everybody is a bully, and you must fully enter society to meet good people.

You’ve Experienced Too Much Upheaval

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While change can be exciting, it’s not always good. If you’ve known nothing but upheaval your whole life, you’ve likely never had the chance to settle down. People who moved house a lot as children will have lost friendships and homes their whole lives, so they constantly struggle to stay in one place.

You’re Extremely Introverted

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Shy people often struggle to make themselves heard in big groups, but extreme introversion holds you back from almost any social participation. According to Introvert, Dear, introverts are constantly reminded that they’re different and made to feel like that’s a bad thing. This causes them to withdraw, feeling like they don’t fit into society.

You Disagree With Cultural Norms

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Cultural norms dictate society, so if you stray from the status quo, you’ll likely find yourself on the outside looking in. Standing up for your beliefs is important, but you won’t feel like you fit in if you’re being alienated. Associating with like-minded people will help you regain your sense of belonging.

You Crave Deep Connections

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Nowadays, many friendships and relationships are casual, and a lack of effort makes it difficult to create long-term connections. If you crave meaningful relationships, you’ll struggle to fit into a fast-paced society and may feel left behind. There are people out there just like you, but it can be difficult to find them.

You’re Self-Conscious

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Self-consciousness results from low self-esteem, which greatly impacts how you form relationships. Peaceful Mind warns that low self-esteem means you’ll struggle to be your authentic self because you’re insecure. If you constantly worry about what others think, your self-consciousness is holding you back from finding your place in society.

You Live Abroad

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Moving states is one thing, but moving abroad is an entirely unique cultural shift. You must speak a second language and abide by social norms different from those you grew up with, which is difficult to adapt to. You might struggle to fit in if you feel like an outsider.

Your Hobbies Aren’t Mainstream

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People with hobbies like team sports or theater will always find themselves around like-minded people, but it’s hard to form similar connections if your hobbies are less mainstream. You can connect with people via online communities, but a lack of physical interaction can be alienating, even if you enjoy your niche hobbies.

You Have Social Anxiety

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Social anxiety is debilitating because it makes every interaction feel like a battle. The only way to overcome social anxiety is to seek help, but that might seem difficult if you don’t feel safe anywhere. When your own mind discourages you, you often give up on fitting in before you try.

You’re Too Career-Driven

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Forming professional connections is integral for a successful career, but some workaholics let their jobs take over, which prevents them from socializing. You miss out on a lot when you choose to work overtime instead of seeing your friends and family, and you’ll struggle to fit back into social groups.

You Haven’t Reached the Same Milestones

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Society defines important milestones as things like getting a promotion, getting married, and having children. If everyone you know is hitting these milestones while you’re not, you’ll feel left behind while they go through significant life changes. However, you should always remember that everyone experiences their life at a different pace.

You Hate Small Talk

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Some people hate small talk, but it’s much more important than you might think. Forbes emphasizes the benefits of small talk, including allowing us to find common ground and overcome social discomfort. If you actively shy away from small talk, you’re hampering your communication skills and removing yourself from society.

You’ve Been Rejected

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Rejection hurts, and whether it’s friends, partners, or employers turning us away, it can be hard not to internalize negative feelings. This stops you from feeling like you belong because you think something is wrong with you and want to protect yourself from being hurt again.

You Try Too Hard

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You might feel like you don’t belong anywhere because you try too hard to force connections. Forming attachments is important, but so is being true to yourself, so masquerading as someone you’re not just to fit in won’t end well.

You Struggle to Be Happy

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Finally, It’s hard to fit in when you struggle to feel happy. Continuous low mood won’t just remove your sense of belonging, but it’s also a sign of depression that you shouldn’t ignore. Not only will your mental health deteriorate, but you’ll lose your desire to belong anywhere and likely give up all hope.

Up Next: 18 Reasons Why Men Get Grumpier As They Age

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You might read this and be able to relate, or you may feel you’ve become grumpier the older you’ve gotten. Or maybe you know of a male friend or relative who has. Here are 18 reasons why men get grumpier as they age.

18 Reasons Why Men Get Grumpier As They Age

17 Products Millennials Refuse to Buy and It’s Affecting the Economy

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Millennials have been the center of so much media attention due to their spending habits. Their unique ways of spending have built up and crushed many traditional industries. In this article, we look at 17 things millennials stopped buying and how that has impacted society.

17 Products Millennials Refuse to Buy and It’s Affecting the Economy

Where Even Truck Drivers Won’t Stop

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Truck drivers tend to be hardy souls—well-seasoned travelers who aren’t often afraid to rest up or refuel in risky locations. However, there are certain U.S. locations that even the most road-weary trucker refuses to stop at for fear of criminal activity or natural dangers. Here are 17 such locations that even experienced truck drivers approach with trepidation (or not at all).