Yup. You read that right. I am openly admitting that I am an imposter.
Or, at least, I often find myself feeling that way.
And, though I know I am not alone in experiencing imposter syndrome or feelings of inadequacy, I know I have to find a way to get to the other side of it.
Allow me to paint you a picture...
As a project and event manager, I (not surprisingly;) take on a lot of projects and events. And, I kid you not, in the course of each and every one, I have a moment (or moments, who am I kidding) where I fear that the people I’m working with are going to “find out” that I’m not who I claim to be.
Yes, I have years of experience creating, managing and executing organized, successful events. I am comfortable asking questions, I am capable of owning my mistakes and learning new methods as I go, I can troubleshoot through challenges and take things in stride… In some cases, I thrive on this stuff, yet I still find a way to convince myself that I won’t be able to successfully execute *this* event. Or take on *that* project.
I self-sabotage. “That was a fluke that I pulled that event off” or “that project was only a success because of the other people I worked with.” These are things I tell myself and legitimately believe when I approach something new. I set myself up for failure and I even sometimes look for potential scenarios of how I’m likely going to fail before I even give myself a chance to succeed.
My brain works on overdrive (hence the name of my blog;) and I can find myself spending more time worrying my way through multiple theoretical situations where people are going to “figure me out” – than I spend actually starting the work that I love to do that will ultimately build my confidence and remind me that I am actually quite capable.
Aren’t I a delight?
So what do I do to get to the other side of this?
I’ve been doing this my whole life at various times – getting so far and then stepping away just before “people find out that I’m a fraud”, convincing myself not to speak up because “someone else will likely have a better idea anyway”, not even taking the perceived risk in the first place.
How do you break a habit that’s not only ingrained in you, but that you’ve only just (finally) recognized is a legit problem that you have to work through?
How do you break through fear and push yourself out of your comfort zone (besides saving screen captured inspirational quotes on your phone)?
Maybe simply admitting it (and openly sharing it in a blog post;) is just what I need to do to get to the other side. Or, at the very least, start to make my way there…
Maybe, in some twisted way, if it’s “out there” that I am struggling with self doubt and feeling like a fraud, I will be less likely to follow through on my self-fulfilling prophecy of failure. I’ll flip the switch and be more likely to own the skills and talents that I know I have and trust that the good things that people tell me about myself are true.
I’ll be more likely to show up.
2019 was the first year that I chose a word of the year. It was MOVE. [ Motion is lotion. Movement is medicine ]. And I kind of liked having something to refer back to when I felt like I needed to regroup.
This year, I’m technically choosing two words – SHOW UP.
Show up for things just outside my comfort zone.
Show up for the people I care about.
Show up for myself.
Let’s see how this goes… 🖤
As a mental health advocate, this blog is dedicated mostly to my experiences living with depression and anxiety.