Imposter Syndrome

I haven’t written anything in a while.

I had a conversation a couple of months ago about the blog that spooked me. I started to question why I should write anything down. What particular wisdom do I have to share? Why would anyone care what I have to say?

Imposter syndrome.

I’ve come up against this in practically every meaningful pursuit of my life so far. Every job. Parenting. Marriage. Running.

I’m generally a positive person with a strong sense of myself. I tend to start off feeling confident, enthusiastic, and energetic. But then some bit of doubt creeps in. Someone challenges me. Or something doesn’t go as planned. I start to think, you know what, I’m not cut out for this. I don’t even know how I got here. I don’t have the skills/experience/talent/passion/commitment/patience.

Ultimately, I know that this line of thinking is a pretty lame attempts at preserving my fragile ego. If I don’t try, I can’t fail. If I don’t risk myself, I won’t get hurt.

It’s easy to be a cynic. To sit on the sidelines and cast aspersions. To be a pundit.

It’s much harder and scarier to try and do something.

And, something doesn’t have to be everything. Extremes are easy to pursue but much harder to sustain. I sometimes pursue the most extreme version of things in order to give myself a rationale exit strategy. Well, of course that wasn’t sustainable. I had to quit!

It’s not enough to recognize imposter syndrome for what it is. I’ve known the concept for years. I’ve been able to name it when I feel it. What I haven’t been able to do is to name the fear and the doubt for what it is – an excuse for me to avoid failure and shame.

Instead of interpreting those fearful moments as a sign that I’m too far out on a limb, I am going to try understanding them as the chance to build my reservoir of faith and resolve.

There is a song from the Indigo Girls that I love called Hammer And A Nail. My favorite line is this:

“The sweetest part is acting after making a decision.”

Here’s to living in that sweetness.

2 thoughts on “Imposter Syndrome

  1. Totally understand this syndrome and suffer from it myself quite often. Your thoughts/feelings/views are valid and appreciated. ❤️

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