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How can I stop feeling inferior to my classmates? They are in their mid 20s and I am in my 30s.

6 Answers
Last Updated: 03/23/2021 at 10:49pm
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
Moderated by

Stacy Overton, PhD.


I am an enthusiastic life-long learner and also a professor of counseling. I have a passion for peoples stories and helping to guide and empower the human spirit.

Top Rated Answers
February 22nd, 2018 6:11am
First of all I want to say that there's nothing to be ashamed about to be in school in your 30s! If anything, it shows your desire and persistent to learn and improve where many others have long given up! But I understand in real life sometimes it is harder to face with this feeling that you are lagging behind or feeling that you don't fit in well with the people around you in class. One way to help you stop this feeling of inferiority is to counter it with finding your self-worth in the situation. Positive self-talk, like the compliment I give you above, can remind yourself that you are in fact no worse than your classmates. Find the things you are good at in your studies and focus on them, I have no doubt you must possess many. In fact, you might even find something you are good at and better than your classmates, and when you find them, use your strengths to help the people around you grow and develop. If you are having this feeling of inferiority because you cannot mix in well with your classmates, you can try to get to know your them better, maybe you will discover than they don't really look down on you! And regardless of what, never do you look down upon yourself at the very first place!
February 23rd, 2021 3:18am
It is common to compare ourselves to others. We are all at different points in life and seeking to learn and to grow is an admirable goal. Focusing on your own work and remembering your strengths can help you to feel better. I have gone through this struggle at times as well. I think that the important thing to remember for me is that we are all learning. Those that go to a classroom are there to learn. Nobody is perfect and nobody knows everything. Even people that seem like geniuses make mistakes. One last thing that helped me was to find something in the class that I really enjoyed or had a passion for. By doing this, I can often distract myself from thinking of others and how they feel about me!
February 22nd, 2018 4:26pm
I think it honestly would help if you had positive things outside of college to look forward to. If your life outside of college is good then you won't care as much that you don't have mates to hang out with. I'm kind of struggling with the same thing and to be honest I'll probably start talking to the mature students more because they're all there to get there degree, not for the social life.
May 15th, 2018 4:45pm
You are choosing to be there learning and growing yourself. Many of them are probably just going there because that's where their parents wanted them to go and they have no idea what they want to do with their life. You are here working on yourself and asking good questions. I bet not many of them can say that. I hope that helps.
March 23rd, 2021 10:49pm
Thanks for reaching out! I'm really sorry to hear this. It sounds really difficult to feel inferior to your classmates due to age being the factor. It can be daunting and nerve-racking communicating with groups of people who vary from you in terms of age group but you can try to approach them to talk with them at some point. You can ask yourself why their age and your age is making you feel inferior before you decide to approach them. Where is this feeling of inferiority coming from? Are you worried that you and these groups of mid 20's people will not have much in common? Be yourself with them as easy as it is to say! Treat them like they are in the same age group as yourself. You may have interesting topics that may motivate them to connect with you or vice versa. You can develop a stronger relationship communicating with each other about homework. This creates a group where everyone can feel supported as well as share ideas or concerns. Keep thriving and wishing you all the best! You’re welcome to reach out to one of our listeners or therapists on our site for further support! There are also Mindfulness and Self-help exercises available on our site.
June 25th, 2018 3:56am
Your age is making you feel inferior but this is one of your strongest points. The things which you know and have experienced can help them and thy will respect you for that. The question can be how I feel comfortable with my classmates?