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Being an Outsider

Being an Outsider

The world is full of outsiders: students at university far from home, immigrants to a new country. Many American workers became outsiders when they quit their jobs in the Great Resignation.

But because it was voluntary doesn't make it easy. Being an outsider can be lonely and difficult. Yet, there is little evidence that being an outsider creates long-term problems for happiness or lowers your chance of success. When people are thrust between places and cultures, they tend to develop strength, flexibility, and resiliency.

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MORE IDEAS FROM THE SAME ARTICLE

Many older theories of philosophy and psychiatry would predict difficult outcomes for outsiders and would recommend against being one if possible.

  • Being an outsider is a feature, not a bug. When you are new in a group, you might view your unfamiliarity as a cost of doing business, but it is making you stronger and more resilient.
  • Find regular ways to be an outsider. Find opport...

Outsiders may suffer somewhat in the short term, but evidence shows that in the long run, being an outsider may be one of the best investments you will ever make, and you should embrace it, pain and all.

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