Today’s Question of the Day is from one Ms. Samantha. Samantha writes:
Most people that meet me see me as this naive little girl, and I feel like they’re looking down on me when they see me like that. I know I’m young (19), but how can I get people to stop seeing me this way? I pay all my own bills, and am more responsible for myself than most people my age, and apart from keeping that up, I’m at a loss.
I wish I could say that what other people think of you doesn’t matter. Which maybe, if you are an enlightened monk-like who floats through life sure of your own okayness, it doesn’t. But for most of us, it does.
But you can’t say things to change people’s impression of you. There is little that does a worse job of conveying grown-up-ness than making a “You guys, I am so adult. SO ADULT. Not childlike at all! I pay my bills! I sing along with that Destiny’s Child song in good conscience!” announcement.
You do things to change that impression. And maybe it works, or maybe it doesn’t. But you are a grown-up, and others not recognizing you as such doesn’t invalidate that.
Also, I will note that any degree to which people underestimate you is nearly always in your favor. It is an advantage you have over them. You can astound them just by maintaining a steady level of [maturity, competence, intelligence, whatever].