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Do I have any hope of succeeding with no social skills? Watch

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    Ever since I was 3, my parents always emphasises the need not to 'fall behind'. This, over the years, has manifested in academic perfectionism and high ambitions. I am very tough on myself at times. I already feel like a pathetic failure in some ways for having so limited social skills and feeling that I have no friends. I put in so much work at school that delays to my University career (because I was bullied and manipulated by an evil student who has since been kicked out) have made me feel that even if I graduate with a First, I will be a failure as I will have fallen behind all of my peers. It can break me seeing people who had a good balance between studying and social at school (whilst I studied all of the time) getting on and doing better than me. I worked so much harder than them - there is no justice. I lost two years of my life because I was bullied and no one cared about me enough in school to actually prepare me for University so that I would not suffer manipulation. I slipped under the radar at school and wasn't even diagnosed until University. I am back on track academically now (I am averaging a very high 2.1) in and have sort of put the bullying I suffered behind me (albeit now I have less confidence with people) but I can't get over the fact that I have lost two years, feel as if I have no friends and that I have fallen behind. Can I still get a good job with very limited social abilities?
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    I think there's a difference between actively not caring about you and just not understanding your situation. Like for the past 3 years I've been struggling with anxiety and it's damaged relationships I used to have with my friends, but that's because I didn't tell them they were hurting me. It doesn't make what they did right, but they didn't know it was bad because I wasn't telling them how to help me. Maybe people just didn't see that you were suffering. It's never obvious from the outside.

    I feel like I've 'lost time' too, because people act like your teenage years will be the best years of your life and you'll have loads of fun and stuff. Really, you have to focus on what being bullied and feeling bad has taught you: it's shown that you're resilient, because it was hard but you're still standing, it's taught you that a work/fun balance is important, it's taught you that you're not perfect and putting that pressure on yourself is bad for you, and it's taught you that sometimes you can work really hard for something and still not get what you want. Those are all valuable things to know, that time might not have been good but maybe it wasn't a waste.

    I think you have a good opportunity now to let go of your perfectionism. Start applying for jobs, put yourself in a situation where you have to talk to people and where you have to make mistakes. Making mistakes is how you learn, and once you start making them you realise its not so bad. If you feel like you have limited social abilities, you can change that.
 
 
 
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