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17 Signs You're a Born Rebel

Going with the flow? Sounds like a drag.

Sure, some people are eager to follow life's rules to a T, but you've always been more of a color-outside-the-lines kind of person. From your professional life to your personal life, you've never been afraid of making waves or standing out from the crowd. Sound like you? Chances are you've got rebellion in your DNA.

However, it's not just breaking the rules that appeals to you—your entire raison d'etre is about challenging other people's world views, broadening your own horizons, and generally living by your own set of rules. We've rounded up 17 signs you're a born rebel, from the ones you wear like a badge of honor to those ones only the truly rebellious will recognize. And if you're ready to improve your life, start with these 40 Life-Changing Habits to Follow After 40.

The thrill always comes first.

frustrated woman in office in front of laptop

For many people, the ultimate way to prove you've made it is to feel secure, whether that means having a job you're going to stick with for the next 30 years or having an ever-growing stockpile of cash. To you, security has never been a goal at all—you'd much rather have another adventure to look forward to than millions in the bank. And when you want to lead a more exciting existence, book one of these 25 Adventures You Should Have Before You Die.

You always want to stand out—for better or for worse.

friends singing karaoke

Blending in is simply not an option for you. You've never been afraid to make your presence known, whether that means breaking into an unplanned solo during your elementary school class play or getting your picture in the paper for your hilarious sign at a political protest.

You're never scared to make a major life change at the drop of a hat.

Passport, what to give up in your 40s

The word "complacent" isn't in your vocabulary. When things aren't going the way you'd hoped, you simply head for greener pastures. International moves, major job changes, or simply ditching relationships that have run their course never frighten you in the least. And if you're eager to switch things up, start with these 30 Life Changes You Should Make After 30.

Your style screams "unapproachable" to others.

80s Jokes

Looking attractive to others has never been your goal when getting dressed in the morning. You don't care if you don't fit into other people's narrow definitions of what you should look like—all you care about is being true to yourself and what you think looks good. That means that tattoos, piercings, leather, and spikes (and neon—lots of neon) have never been off-limits to you.

You take the lead.

never say at work

Even as a kid, you were the leader of the pack, always introducing your friends to new games, leading the charge against the mystery meat in your middle school cafeteria, and often worrying your friends' parents along the way. As an adult, you're still an innovator, spearheading new initiatives at work and trying new and creative ways to problem-solve in your personal life, too.

You question everything.


Just because someone tells you something is true doesn't mean you accept that as a fact. You've never bowed down to authority, you always asked your teachers an infuriating number of questions in school, and as an adult, you won't believe something you read or heard unless you did your own investigation first. And for answers to some of these questions, learn the 100 Facts That Will Make You Say "Wow!"

You've always felt tied down by relationships.

Happy woman

It's not that you're eager to be alone, per se, but you've never felt like having a relationship was a particular goal. In fact, committing to a single person has always seemed like a burden—settling down has always felt like just that to you: settling. If dating isn't your cup of tea, make sure you know these 15 Signs You Should Definitely Be Single.

You're always vocal about your opinions.

phrases men over 40 should stop using

"Unpopular opinion" might as well be your middle name. While you don't necessarily seek controversy, you're no shrinking violet it comes to talking about things you're passionate about, from politics to your personal life, and you never shy away from a heated debate.

Your career has never defined you.

man working outside

Your job is something you do, but you've never considered it something you are. While you've definitely had jobs you love, your interests outside the workplace have always come ahead of what you're doing in your career. Your least favorite question at dinner parties has always been the seemingly obligatory, "What do you do?"

You tend to make other people a little uncomfortable at first.

red flags Being Single in your thirties
bbernard / Shutterstock

Playing by your own rules tends to make others feel a little uncomfortable at first. You're not afraid to ask personal questions, reveal details about yourself, or get into a heated debate with someone you just met, even if that sometimes puts new acquaintances on edge.

Being unpopular has never been a concern for you.

words that people over 30 won't get

Life has never been a popularity contest to you—in fact, while you don't have much trouble making friends, having people like you has never been a goal for you at all. To you, marching to the beat of your own drummer has always been more important than having a big parade follow you while you do it.

You don't blindly follow rules.

Stop Sign Illegal

You know that rules are made to be questioned, and, in many cases, broken. To you, any rule that won't get you immediately arrested if you break it (and some that will) can be bended—and in many cases, you think opting not to follow what's expected of you is a smarter choice, anyway.

tendon exercises mountaineer

You live for new experiences.

Even when you don't know what the outcome will be you, you love nothing more than experiencing new things. Whether you're taking last-minute trips just to get a change of scenery, skydiving on a whim, or driving for hours to see a can't-miss concert, you'd rather suffer through the occasional mediocre new experience than do the same thing over and over again. For ideas on how to live life to its fullest, check out the 40 Best Bucket-List Experiences for People Over 40.

You refuse to let other people's labels define you.

Young Happy Woman at Work

Labels have never felt comfortable to you to begin with, and you're certainly not interested in letting a label define what you can and can't be. You know that people without college degrees can be geniuses, working-class folks can be successful, moms can be sexy, single people aren't always sad, and that no one aspect of your life defines who you are as a person.

Being alone doesn't scare you.

happy man living his best life positive

Flying solo has never been an intimidating prospect to you. While you love having your inner circle around you, you're also just as comfortable in your own company—it's one of the reasons you've never clung to a bad relationship or tried to make it work at a job that just wasn't a good fit.

You can turn any situation into a cause for celebration.

words people over 30 won't get

Despite your ability to enjoy yourself alone, you also tend to be the life of the party when the time calls for it. You've been known to turn a book club into a rousing conversation, light up a boring game night with a round of Truth or Dare, or just throw an impromptu dance party wherever you happen to be.

Your role models are all rule-breakers.

50 funniest facts

You've never found people who follow the rules to be a source of inspiration. You've always looked to political activists, groundbreaking artists, and those who simply weren't eager to be constrained by the rules of the world around them as your role models. When other kids had sports heroes on their walls, you had a poster of Malala. And for more surprising sources of wisdom, check out these 100 Life-Changing Quotes to Inspire Your Days.

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Sarah Crow
Sarah Crow is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!, where she focuses on celebrity news and health coverage. Read more