Staind – “Outside” Lyrics Meaning

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Written By Joanna Landrum

Joanna holds a BSc in English Literature and uses her expertise in literary analysis to uncover the deeper meaning of her favorite songs.

“Outside” by Staind is an emotional journey, an exploration of inner pain and vulnerability. It’s about the struggle to fit in, the battle to be accepted and to be seen. The songwriter, Aaron Lewis, calls out to someone who hides their true self, bringing to light their ugliness inside that mirrors his own. In essence, the song gives voice to the inner feelings of loneliness and alienation, letting listeners know they aren’t alone in their battles.

If you’ve ever felt on the ‘outside,’ this deep dive into Staind’s “Outside” is for you. Explore the lyrics like never before, uncovering the raw emotion and hidden meaning. Stick around to get into the mind of songwriter Aaron Lewis.

“Outside” Lyrics Meaning

Staind’s “Outside” starts with the lyrics, “And you bring me to my knees/Again.” Here, Aaron Lewis reveals an image of desperation and repeated disappointment. It’s an expression of vulnerability, of being at someone’s mercy time and time again. The line, “All the times that I could beg you please/In vain,” further emphasizes the idea of unreciprocated emotions or efforts.

The chorus takes us to the main theme of the song – feeling on the outside. The lyrics, “But I’m on the outside, I’m looking in/I can see through you, see your true colors/’Cause inside you’re ugly, you’re ugly like me” represent the feeling of alienation, of being different, an outsider looking in. However, there’s a twist: the outsider is not just observing but also understanding the inner ugliness hidden beneath the façade.

Moving on, we see the lines, “And I taste what I could never have/It was from you.” This implies a sense of yearning and the anguish of unfulfilled desires. It’s as if the song’s protagonist is close to something they deeply desire but can’t quite attain, leading to even more feelings of alienation and sadness.

Toward the end of the song, the lyrics, “And I feel all this pain/Stuffed it down, it’s back again” and “All alone, I can’t mend/But I feel tomorrow will be okay” sum up the essence of the song — the pain of loneliness, the struggle to cope, but with a glimmer of hope, a belief that things will get better.

All through the song, the juxtaposition of loneliness, pain, understanding, and hope creates a powerful narrative about the human condition. It’s about seeking acceptance, understanding others, and trying to reconcile with one’s own inner struggles.

The Story Behind “Outside”

While writing “Outside,” Aaron Lewis, the lead vocalist of Staind, was grappling with feelings of vulnerability, alienation, and inner turmoil. His experience resonates in the song, capturing the shared human experience of feeling ‘on the outside.’ The raw emotion and honesty embedded in the lyrics reflect Lewis’s mental state during that period.

The song was reportedly written during a soundcheck, encapsulating a spontaneous outpouring of emotion that only adds to the intensity and authenticity of the song. The unfiltered sentiments lend the song a cathartic edge, making it a beacon for those who have ever felt alienated or misunderstood.

“Outside” is more than just a song; it’s a testament to the shared human experience of struggle, longing, and the pursuit of acceptance. It’s about understanding and being understood, about confronting our inner ugliness and still finding hope, however small, that things will be okay.