Being popular is actually over-rated. Many people confuse it with leadership. They are not the same.
Popularity is about being liked whereas leadership is about being respected. Mr. Popular focuses on his/her needs whereas the leader is consumed with meeting group goals and objectives. It is a waste of time trying to be Mr./Ms. Popular if you have a desire to be a change agent. I should know since I was Mr. Popular in college. The person doing keg stands and jello shots in the back of the frat house is not the person you will follow when it is time to accomplish something significant.
It is important to be likeable but more important to be respected as someone who gets things done. Being popular is actually quite easy but short-lived. Being a leader is far more difficult and requires risk. We all have choices.
It is about progress not perfection!
“Being a leader is like being a lady, if you have to go around telling people you are one, you aren’t”– Margaret Thatcher