One of the key elements of being cool is being unconcerned with how others perceive you. Everyone knows nothing is as awesome as a dude who plays by his own rules, consequences be damned. The ironic part of this is, of course, that the less you care about what people think about you, the more they’ll think of you. Most people know this simple truth, but what they often fail to realize is that you have to be genuinely unconcerned. Pretending doesn’t cut it. There are many ways people try and fail to do this, but the most common is the person who takes every opportunity to tell others how little they care.
You know the sort. They constantly insist on how your opinion of them or doing what society tells them means nothing to them. Their favorite stock phrase involves loudly proclaiming to all within earshot that they don’t give a fuck, a shit, a crap or a damn, and they’ll often finish it off with something about how they do what they want.
To say I find these people annoying would be an understatement. Of course you give a shit, you douche! Why would you feel the need to talk about it otherwise? You’re not telling yourself. You’re telling everyone around you. And why? Anyone who feels the need to tell everyone that they don’t give a shit, clearly does give a shit.
They desperately want to seem coolly apathetic in the same way a rich kid wearing a pair of jeans that came with holes pre-worn in them desperately doesn’t want to seem like a bland, boring, spoiled kid from the suburbs. The thing is, the harder you try to be something you’re not, the more you’ll appear to be the worst kind of whatever you are. What could be more self-conscious than loudly telling everyone you’re not self-conscious? Being unable to stop shouting about how you’re not drunk is a dead giveaway you’re wasted. Talking about how honest or rich or talented you are is probably a sign you’re not that honest or rich or talented. The real deal doesn’t have to say it. You all just need to stop. You’re like an honor student who wants good grades and stayed up all night studying but is afraid of looking like a nerd so he brags about how he didn’t study at all.
This is all to say it comes down to being genuine. People respect people who act like what they are inside. It’s trite but true: just be yourself. Caring about people thinking you don’t care is always going to seem fake.