Editor's note: We asked noted entrepreneurs to reflect on what they wish they'd known starting out and to put it in a letter to their younger selves. Kathryn Minshew co-founded The Muse, a platform used by 50+ million millennials to advance in their careers, and has appeared on multiple 30 Under 30 lists.

Dear Kathryn,

You're completely awkward and uncool. At least, that's what you tell yourself repeatedly. Like so many teenagers, your sole concern is fitting in and being accepted. Yet, that doesn't change the fact that you still do things differently than most people.

Everybody's going one way, and you're headed in a totally different direction. And, right now, that causes you a great deal of angst. You don't want to stand out--you just want to blend in.

But, if there's one thing to reassure you of, it's this: Going against the grain is ultimately what will make you successful. After all, you don't hear of many trailblazers who did things exactly the same way as everybody else did.

Unfortunately, being different does not get easier.

In your early days as an entrepreneur, you'll be working on The Muse out of a living room in Brooklyn, then California, then back to Brooklyn. You'll spend your days crisscrossing both cities in attempts to raise capital, only to be rejected repeatedly by investors over breakfast, coffee, lunches, and everything in between.

The problem is, these investors don't believe in your focus on content to attract a community of users--something that you feel really strongly about. You will even have one venture capitalist lean back in his chair and blatantly say, "I'll write you a check right now if you kill the content."

Of course, you'll have your moment of doubt. If all of these respected arbiters of finance are telling you that you should change direction, is it time you finally give up and listen?

Don't let that nagging fear--that feeling that being different automatically qualifies you as being wrong--eat away at you. You'll manage to stammer out a direct, "No" and walk out of that imposing glass building, leaving that investor slack-jawed at the other end of the mahogany table.

Walking away won't be easy. Knowing that you have a different perspective from the prevailing wisdom is downright terrifying and will actually bring you right back to those feelings of self-doubt and inadequacy that you know all too well right now.

However, your different perspective is also what will lead to your success.

A few years later, content will be a crucial piece of the puzzle in building and growing The Muse. And, many larger platforms will begin to follow suit. They too will publish exciting, quality content so people have a reason to return time and time again.

Yes, that very idea of yours that was touted as stupid or unnecessary by countless outsiders will now be the norm in the industry, and you'll be glad that you stood resolute in your beliefs and didn't cave into the pressure to fit into a certain mold.

I know, being the odd one out can feel brutal. But, rest assured, it's also wonderful--because your desire to do things differently isn't "uncool." In fact, it's the exact opposite.

Muse On,

Kathryn