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Old 02-20-2021, 02:51 AM   #1
jkray
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Default Feeling childish and left out

Sometimes I still feel exactly like the most unpopular kid who’s always the last one picked for the team. I mean this has literally happened to me in the past and now as a full-grown adult basically the same thing happened in an online meeting the other day. Why would someone even structure a supposed “team-building” activity this way in the first place? Then, when I’m finally given a chance to speak, why do I feel so embarrassed and ashamed that I rush and say only a fraction of what I really want to?

It sucks that I still feel so little confidence in myself that something so minor still makes me just want to shrink away and hide. I feel like there’s still so much work I need to do when it comes to my self esteem that I don’t even know where to begin (or whether I’m a lost cause since I can’t shake these feelings and still feel like such a child).

It’s always been hard for me making and keeping friends. I’ve been at this job for a long time and I’ve always been nice to people and accomplished a lot professionally, but it’s like everyone is at best unaware of my existence and at worst weirdly repelled by me. I know intellectually that someone has to be chosen last and none of this likely was done purposefully, but why do I still feel so left out all of the time?
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Static on the line, I hear it all the time
But I'm quiet when you make me fade
Feel it coming back, watch it turn to black
But I'm brighter when you make me fade
You make me fade, you make me fade
You make me brighter when you make me fade


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Old 02-21-2021, 04:58 PM   #2
Skeezyks
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Smile Re: Feeling childish and left out

Thanks for sharing your concerns. I'm afraid I don't have any solutions or advice to offer. But I thought I would at least leave a brief note letting you know I read your post... and I wish you well.
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Old 02-21-2021, 06:18 PM   #3
Que Sera Sera
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Default Re: Feeling childish and left out

ive reread your post a few times and same few questions pop up each time... have you been employed there longer than most of your coworkers? sre you older than most of your coworkers? do you have more experience doing this line of work than your coworkers?
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Old 02-22-2021, 05:20 PM   #4
jkray
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Default Re: Feeling childish and left out

Well, I’d say I fall kind of in the middle in terms of age and time working at my current job. I do have a lot of experience and an extra degree. I would say that some might think I stand out in terms of my background and way of seeing things.
__________________
—————————————————————————

Static on the line, I hear it all the time
But I'm quiet when you make me fade
Feel it coming back, watch it turn to black
But I'm brighter when you make me fade
You make me fade, you make me fade
You make me brighter when you make me fade


- K. Flay from Make Me Fade

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Old 02-25-2021, 04:48 PM   #5
WovenGalaxy
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Default Re: Feeling childish and left out

@jkray Reading your post, jkray, I can certainly relate to having thoughts like this. I've read that loneliness, in an of itself, can cause thought distortions in those who are lonely. Same goes with depression, anxiety, low self esteem...it lies. Maybe your coworkers are more glad you're there than you think. Or maybe they don't know what to say to you if you happen to give off a "don't talk to me" vibe. Maybe they are more outgoing? Doesn't make you a "child" or less than at all. Doesn't mean you belong any less. At least you are aware that some things need working on within you. Balance that out with what you like about yourself and what you've done right. As I'm sure there's a list of good things about you too. I hope you are feeling better today.
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Old 02-26-2021, 04:45 PM   #6
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Default Re: Feeling childish and left out

Yes, I think I do have a tendency to jump to negative (and often unrealistic) conclusions. Thanks for helping me keep things in perspective.
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Old 03-27-2021, 09:47 PM   #7
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Default Re: Feeling childish and left out

I can relate to most of what you wrote. I've always been chosen last in school as well despite the fact that I got a B consistently over the years. I was even told I was good at soccer for an amateur. I always tried my best. A few of the mean popular girls were always the team leaders and since a few of their friends hated me, they ended up hating me too although I never did anything bad to them or said anything bad about them.

I was a lot shier back then. I rarely stuck up for myself most of the time. As for you, it sounds like you might have anxiety issues. Maybe people aren't trying to ignore you. If you don't speak up, then the extroverts and more confident people will definitely not give you a chance at all. Especially in a competitive place like work.

Can you try to write down what you want to say and then speak up more? I'd speak to a therapist about this issue. It might help you deal with these issues. Maybe people overlook you since you don't speak up and maybe they think that you want to be left alone or assume that you don't have anything to say if you remain quiet.

Not many people will ask for your opinions during a meeting if you don't speak up. Even in a small one on one group the loudest and most extroverted person always dominates the conversation. That is why I hate being in groups. I will never ever introduce my friends to each other now because of this. I like my one on one encounters.

Anyways, I have similar issues with people. Is there anything that you can think of that you might be doing to repel others? Can you ask trusted friends for their honest opinions? If you're on good terms with your boss, ask him or her for their feedback on what areas you can make improvements on aside from needing to speak up more.

Look up assertive communication skills. Try to be more assertive outside of work too. Practice talking to store clerks. Do you have any annoying habits that you don't think is a big deal but that would be something that annoys other people? One former friend of mine didn't respect boundaries. She'd always interrupt me, talk over me, repeat herself, gossip a lot, try to control me, etc...

Is your hygine OK? Do you look at other people in the eye or not? Do you stare at them or stand to close to them? Do you talk to much or ask questions that are to personal or inappropriate? Did your former friends ever tell you why they stopped talking to you? If you see a pattern there, then try to change whatever those problems are.

If they complained that you talk to much or complain to much, then maybe that's something you need to work on. I'm just giving examples here. I've been told I can take things to personally at times. Maybe you might be a sensitive person too, but that's OK. Some people do have a hard time dealing with sensitive people though.

Try to ignore the people who are repulsed by you. It's possible they're just not nice people. It could be them and not you. Try talking more to whoever seems nice at work. Ask how they're doing, bring donuts to work. Put out a candy dish by your desk to attract people. Be a good listener as everyone likes people who listens to them.
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Old 03-28-2021, 03:06 AM   #8
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Default Re: Feeling childish and left out

Quote:
Originally Posted by jkray View Post
Sometimes I still feel exactly like the most unpopular kid who’s always the last one picked for the team. I mean this has literally happened to me in the past and now as a full-grown adult basically the same thing happened in an online meeting the other day. Why would someone even structure a supposed “team-building” activity this way in the first place? Then, when I’m finally given a chance to speak, why do I feel so embarrassed and ashamed that I rush and say only a fraction of what I really want to?

It sucks that I still feel so little confidence in myself that something so minor still makes me just want to shrink away and hide. I feel like there’s still so much work I need to do when it comes to my self esteem that I don’t even know where to begin (or whether I’m a lost cause since I can’t shake these feelings and still feel like such a child).

It’s always been hard for me making and keeping friends. I’ve been at this job for a long time and I’ve always been nice to people and accomplished a lot professionally, but it’s like everyone is at best unaware of my existence and at worst weirdly repelled by me. I know intellectually that someone has to be chosen last and none of this likely was done purposefully, but why do I still feel so left out all of the time?
I feel like you may be stuck in the past. If these team-building activities bring back memories of what it felt like being in school, being left out or chosen last - things like this stick with us. You still see yourself as the way you were made to feel in the past. It reminds you of these feelings, being uncomfortable, feeling helpless and uneasy. It is still the same situation. Just with different people. And maybe older now, but let's be honest. You can get bullied at work too, in fact it is quite common. You would think people would get past putting others down to feel great or other ways to treat their insecurities but they don't.
You are open about how you feel, you don't conceal it to others or lie to yourself.
The truth is I am sure you were not the only one feeling like this during this meeting.
You might have fears regarding social situations and your self-esteem but to be honest even after years passed I still struggle with things that happened during puberty and my experience with peer group and other teens. I feel like during these time we are the most vulnerable.
You can try to practice these situations and find things you can take pride in.
But I feel a little insecure and cautious we always tend to stay... Maybe because of introversion.
In the end ask yourself? Have you done anything to challenge yourself and to get better at handling these situations at all costs or avoided them and were glad when they were are as rare as possible?
Then you get your answer.
Growing up adds responsibilities, we get more calm about some things and more patient, but not always.
Being an adult does not make things much easier, even if we do hope for the big change...
We make the big changes through challenging ourselves, gaining independence, investing in personal growth, working on our resilience, confidence and so on. But it takes time...
In terms of team work a lot of times people don't pay much attention to others, they just don't and care more about their own benefits and results - often even more as adults...
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