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Updated 06 Dec 2020

What’s the point of matric reunions?

A few years ago, I attended my matric class' 40-year reunion. I went more out of curiosity than the need to reconnect. Here’s what I learnt from the experience.

Mimi Rupp, 08 March 2018  Share  0 comments  Print

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I didn't have any bad memories of my school years, yet I felt like a fish out of water at my matric reunion. I felt like I didn't necessarily belong. Looking back now, I think my ‘reservedness’ at school was part of my inferiority complex; everyone else was smarter, more beautiful etc. I coped by playing sport and reading books.

Why did I feel out of place?I wasn't an academic nor could I go with the crowd. As I grew older, I found my place, and I discovered my passion and purpose and gained strength in my voice. Although this might seem small and insignificant; until such a time that I had found my voice, I didn't know what career path to follow or how to spend my time constructively. 

Related: Why a winning mindset can make or break your business

Ambition leads to success

I discovered I was extremely driven and ambitious. That I loved people, working as part of a team, but also as a supporter. I found that if I followed my gut all would be good. Being an outsider served me well. I got to observe and understand people better. It also taught me I don't have to take the busiest road; the path less travelled is never as crowded, and far more interesting. 

Getting back from my reunion I realised that I was not the only outsider; several others felt the same. The people I thought had everything going for them, actually didn't. The folk we had least expected success from had achieved the most. I came to realise too, that although I felt so uncomfortable in myself, I had been accepted for who I was. That was incredibly comforting.  

Why do we always try to fit in to conform to a specific mould?In my opinion, no growth and development can take place here. Accepting yourself, being true and reaching for your dreams allows you to achieve your goals.

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About the author

Mimi Rupp

Highly active in the local community as well as within business, Mimi is recognised as one of South Africa and Port Elizabeth’s most well-known female entrepreneurs. Recently named CEO Magazine’s Most Influential Woman in Business in South Africa, and she is using her experience to empower young entrepreneurs through her work and role at the Business Women’s Association and the Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber.

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