wikiHow to Be Quirky

One Methods:Developing your quirkiness

Being "quirky" isn't simply a fashion statement. It's a way of being, always catching people who are unaware with your unpredictability and thrilling them with your expression of your ever-present wonder about the world and its people. Developing a quirky personality and interests should come naturally to you; quirkiness isn't something you can force but if you already lean towards seeing life differently than others around you and you're keen to celebrate this, you're already alert to your quirkiness and it may simply be that you need more confidence in bringing out this side of yourself.

Increasing your quirkiness requires a more intense focus on your more unique qualities and finding ways to let these shine even if you've felt a tad shy about doing so before.


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    Realize what your definition of "quirky" is. This article assumes at the very least that quirky is about being an offbeat and unexpected individual who knows where they stand in the world. Basically, quirkiness is focused on celebrating your own unique perspective of the world, not bothering to be caught up in any trends, fads or mass media messaging about "types" where none of these approaches to living gel with who you are. Being determined to show the world who you are and what you stand for without getting rattled by detractors (and there will always be detractors) is a major part of being quirky, as is breaking the trend rules.
    • Note that a number of alternative cultures like hipsters, punks or beatniks, etc. could be considered quirky. That's probably accurate but you don't need to lump yourself into any alternative grouping to be quirky. You can even start your own style of quirky. Quirky people often stand well alone of even the ironic attempts of alternative groups to be different while all being the same.
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    Don't go changing to try to please anyone. A quirky person will undoubtedly attract attention and some of it unwanted, some of it unkind. Develop a backbone early on and realize that there will always be those in this world who see difference and strength to stand apart from the crowd as threatening. Remember that those who complain or tease the loudest have the least sense of self and have the greatest propensity to conform to the crowd and to ideas of what they "ought to be doing" instead of following the beat of their own drum. Is that for you? Not if you want to be quirky and celebrate all that is uniquely you! So don't let them get you down and definitely don't change yourself for them – a conforming quirky person is like being half alive.
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    Celebrate the parts of your personality that set you apart from "the norm". Who is to say what is "normal"? However, there are always people determined to try to make a normal by grouping together and acting all the same, looking the same and all doing the same things. They define their own normal and treat anyone else outside this normal of theirs as "outside" and therefore "suspect". That's sad and you know it; such people miss out on so much in life – indeed, they live life in black and white and miss the color version with their blinkered vision and reasoning. Love those parts of your personality that rebel against "being normal" and "being like everybody else". Why cruise through life the way someone else wants for you when you not only want to try a different path but you know that it's the right path for you?
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    Know yourself. What things make you feel that you're quirky? You can never learn too much about yourself, so spend some time writing down the ways in which you feel different from other people and why you feel these are important parts of your own makeup. For example, you may always stop to notice how carefully an architect has crafted designs onto a building while all your friends merrily barrel through the front door, completely oblivious. Or you might find colors that others think clash blend together beautifully when dressing in the morning. Perhaps you prefer to analyze accounting problems at work in visual form by drawing pictures and arrows that bring it all together. Whatever ways in which you see the world differently, note them and don't judge them – just accept them and add them to your list of self discovery.
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    Prepare ways in which to defend your outlook to the world. Being quirky probably means you're going to express opinions and viewpoints that differ markedly from others, you're probably wearing fashion your way and not as current trends insist, and you're doing a lot of things differently from other people. This can lead to a sense of defensiveness and bringing down the drawbridge to stop letting in people who criticize you. Instead of allowing that to happen, think ahead of ways to deal with the criticism and to defend yourself with lighthearted brush-offs that put other people in their place. Defensive responses will always potentially garner more criticism because people know they've struck a nerve, so focus on not letting people know they've upset you. Learn to ignore, dismiss or simply politely laugh off jibes aimed at your different way of doing and seeing things. The best thing is to keep a sense of humor and treat other people's lack of understanding with lightheartedness, as much for your own happiness as for removing their sense of satisfaction at hurting you.
    • Write down a list of replies to people if you find yourself tongue-twisted whenever someone criticizes you. Over time, stock standard approaches to replying to people politely become second nature. The more you make it seem that their attitude doesn't impact you, the better.
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    Live large. Give free rein to your quirkiness and develop the unique elements about your life that matter most to you. Quirkiness cannot be slavishly listed in an article – it is what it is to you personally. It may or may not involve things that another person treats as quirky – after all, you don't want to end up ironically "conforming" to an ideal of quirkiness! Be prepared to reveal to the world those sides of yourself that don't necessarily sit easily with current trends and expectations, whether this is your fashion style, your music taste, your political views, your opinions in general, your lifestyle, your hobbies and other interests, and even your relationships.
    • Speak your mind. Provided you're articulate, considerate and respectful of human dignity, speaking your mind is an important part of being quirky. It may shock some people to hear things put bluntly and truthfully but a quirky person doesn't mince words – a quirky person says things as they see them.
    • Get used to articulating controversial topics clearly. If you believe something many other people don't, you'll need facts, good clarity and a determination to explain well in order to get your points across. Avoid badgering, yelling, or forcing your opinions onto others; simply be very well researched, factually based and persistent to get across your alternative points.
    • Observe the mainstream without allowing it to upset you. This can be a difficult challenge for quirky personalities who often want to run from mainstream things but a little knowledge goes a long way to holding polite small talk and knowing what you don't want to be a part of! And be aware that getting too upset about the mainstream is being upset about something you can't control and therefore will deplete your energies. Instead, accept that the existence of the mainstream is what fosters your quirkiness and allows you to be so obviously different.
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    Enjoy time alone and don't be afraid to be single when everyone else is coupled up. It isn't a race to be part of another person's life and it isn't a necessity. Quirky people often need time to develop trusted close connections with a few quality people as they need to know that these people will back them when times are tough. Quirky people aren't fond of fair-weather friends and won't tolerate people who are duplicitous by nature. Look for straightforward, straight talking, honest and caring people to be a part of your friendship and romantic circles.
    • Learn to enjoy solitude if you don't already. Social messages tend to be down on solitude, insinuating that those who like it must be odd or lonely. The truth is that everyone needs a little solitude now and then, and some need it more than others, to reflect, contemplate, think through the greater meaning of your life and to simply sort out the issues of everyday living. Champion solitude by helping others to understand its worth and don't soak up the negative messaging about it.
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    Love other quirky people and quirky things. Be supportive of others' quirkiness and help them to see the value of their quirky natures. And look for the quirky things in life, such as a quirky cottage to live in, quirky garden plants, a quirky car to drive and a quirky pet by your side. Live your quirky and spread the quirky love!

Developing your quirkiness

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    If you'd like to develop certain quirky aspects of yourself, this section will provide some suggestions to help your exploration.
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    If you want a more open love to music, try the following things (with an open mind in each case):
    • Ask family members, friends and people you know for recommendations of music that they like. Listen to it and see if there is anything you particularly enjoy.
    • Go to your library, or thrift store, and pick some songs - whether on a CD, record or tape.
    • Internet! Research people you admire, read their blogs and find out what they're listening to. Or better yet, just go YouTube!
    • Make it a point to listen to a different radio station for at least one hour every day for a week. In the United States, FM stations in the 88-92mHz frequency range tend to have very different formats from the remainder of the dial
    • iTunes releases two to three new songs a week for free in various styles ranging from Renaissance to Hip-Hop. Download these to expand your musical horizons as well as keep up with trends. The less others around you have heard of it, the better!
    • Pandora internet radio is a great resource for new bands.
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    For some people, "quirky" comes down to clothing and nothing else. Research older movies for particularly effective clothing styles - some examples: Breakfast At Tiffany's, Pretty In Pink, Some Kind of Wonderful, etc. or even go back to earlier eras from the 1920s to the 1960s. And don't be afraid to chop and change styles between eras and fashion houses. Whatever you want to evolve your fashion into is completely up to your own sense of style and preferences. Be very wary of any advice that takes the high road of what you can and cannot wear – always wonder where such advice heralds from and why that fashionista has such an agenda to push!
    • To find some awesome clothes, go to thrift stores, eBay, garage sales - wherever you can find them. Don't forget to check boxes in the attic.
    • If you don't have much money or things just aren't looking the way you want them to, just DIY your own gear. For example, old pair of jeans can be shredded, shortened or bleached. Alter, alter, alter anything to turn out just how you want it. (Hint: a quirky person is usually better off knowing how to sew!)
    • Learn to spruce up clothing. Things like beads, sequins, ribbons, badges and feathers to shoes, hats and bags.
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    Decorate your world with anything! Whether it's old gumball wrappers, Superman stickers, old movie posters or just a strange collage, you can decorate or transform study books, bags, walls, pet food bowls, laptop lids, skateboards, household items, your car or scooter, and anything else to make it uniquely yours. View your life as living art and decorate this huge canvas every day of your existence.
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    Find an offbeat hobby that interests you. Quirky people are fond of doing things that mainstream folk will often dismiss as odd (remember to be positive and read "quirky" for odd, every time). So give in to your urge to follow hobbies or interests that others would view with disinterest or disbelief. Whether it's collecting old time television shows, tomato farming on a porch or balcony, listening to NPR, becoming an activist for some cause you believe in, writing a blog about webcomics, soapmaking, refurbishing junk computers – anything is the limit as long as it interests you and fulfills your sense of well being. Being passionate about something unusual is one thing that many quirky people have in common and often that passion can lead to amazing discoveries, create long-term value for others in the world, or result in creating long-lasting collections of things that nobody else ever thought to keep. If it's enjoyable, fulfilling and within your budget, go for it.
    • Avoid copycatting someone else's hobbies unless you're truly interested in that subject or activity.
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    Extend yourself. Self discovery is a journey everyone needs to make, regardless of how they see themselves in the world. It is no different for a quirky person and by exploring your inner self, you will find greater contentment and learn more about who you truly are. Things you can do to start that process include yoga, writing in a diary, and volunteering to help others or other things. You'll feel a lot better about yourself!


  • Remember you will have people with bad comments about you everybody does. To prevent that just make sure to find something quirky people would laugh about in a good way. Entertain your audience and become one with your true self.
  • Greed and obsession with materialism is not quirky. Don't fall into the trap of amassing things that tie you down or catch you up in competitiveness with others.
  • Remember that jealous people are the ones with the problems, not you. They are bored with their own lives, out of ideas, lacking in imagination, terrified of being themselves, afraid to make waves and all that; don't forget that they spite themselves and be compassionate toward them.
  • Stay positive about new things and be open to them. Even mainstream things have their time and can sometimes be developed in incredibly different directions that were never foreseen at the beginning. And think about how the passage of time can redeem once faddish items and make them seem downright quirky decades later!
  • Check out indie movies and indie culture. You may or may not identify with Indie culture (and you don't have to) but quirky people are often into Indie culture because of its very underpinning of supporting independent art and culture.


  • You don't have to "be" anything that doesn't feel right. Resist pressuring yourself to adopt anything that doesn't reflect your own values, beliefs and preferences.
  • Avoid pressuring others to see things your way. Your quirkiness may need to just stand alone sometimes; accept that. It could be that you're way ahead of your time.

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Categories: Personality Traits and Attributes