Why I’ll never be ‘Cool’

Ever since I can remember, I have had this hidden desire to be a ‘cool’ guy.

Just admitting it publicly feels embarrassing, but its the truth.

As young as age five, I felt a strong desire to be popular, to be a part of the group of kids running around the neighborhood causing mischief.

I can’t explain my fascination with fitting in, but it was always there, guiding my actions.

Unfortunately for me, I somehow always fell short. I was never really accepted by the popular kids, and always lived on the periphery.

Maybe I was just too quiet, too intelligent, too weird. I was never good at sports, never popular with girls, never a leader among my peers.

Whatever the true reason, I never quite fit the bill when it came to being a ‘cool’ kid.

As I grew into a teenager, I tried different approaches to change this. I tried to be fashionable, then counter-culture, then ironically detached, then counter-counter-culture. Alas, none of it really gave me that feeling of acceptance.

That was 20 years ago, and you’d think that time changes you. Yet that desire remained.

Up until very recently the need was still hidden deep down inside me. No matter what I did, there was a part of my subconscious that was guided by the desire to be viewed as someone who was revered and respected.

I guess it really comes down to my need to fit in. To be loved.

Despite my previous post about breaking the mold, I still have my deep desires to be part of the group of kids running around causing mischief. Except that these days my ‘mischief’ is a desire for success and status.

Here’s the truth about me:

I am awkward
I am afraid to be myself
I am barely holding it together at times

You know. Just like everyone else.

Yes, I know you feel the same. 

I know because as human beings none of us ever really have it all together. We do our best to hide inside a persona, but we are all shitting ourselves on the inside. Hoping nobody ever finds out that we aren’t really what we’re pretending to be.

What I’ve realized in the past few months is that this is a gift.

As soon as we admit we aren’t ‘cool’ we are suddenly free. Free from the need to be like the people we want acceptance from. Free to be ourselves.

When we admit weakness, we give others courage to be themselves. I don’t mean that we should dwell forever in a pity party, but that by being honest and vulnerable, we show the world we are willing to be who we really are.

For me, its time I let go of the ridiculous notion that I will someday be a ‘cool’ guy.

I won’t be.

Because I am faking myself if I try to be.

Underneath it all, here is the truth about me:

I am genuine
I am kind-hearted
I am courageous

And you know what.
That’s cool.


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