Have you given an important speech or presentation and hoped no one could tell? Have you tried to discipline your child and hoped they couldn't tell? Have you treated a patient, fixed someone's car or decorated someone's wedding cake and hoped they couldn't tell? Hoped they couldn't tell that you didn't feel qualified, that you didn't feel like you knew what you were doing, that there was surely someone else better equipped to handle that task, that you didn't feel like you were good enough, that you felt a like you were faking it?
Have you heard of the Imposter Syndrome? The Imposter Syndrome is a concept describing individuals who are marked by an inability to internalize their accomplishments and a persistent fear of being exposed as a "fraud". I have become familiar with this. Actually, I think I've always had moments of feeling this without knowing what "this" was but recently I've discovered this "syndrome" can grow if left unattended.
Here's what I started to notice. As exciting things would happen in my business I'd say, "You know, I'm just hanging on for the ride!" If I actually accomplished something great and arduous I'd say, "But I just don't know what I'm doing!" (Like it happened on it's own?) When someone would want to do a news story about me, the business and my family, I was always sure to let them know that I'm just a homeschool mom. (Which by the way, is a great accomplishment in itself so I'm not sure why I thought that sounded any easier than starting a business??)
Let's talk a little truth here:
**We all, let me say this louder, WE ALL struggle with fears and insecurities at some point in our lives. We can be 35 and feel like we're still that 15 year old kid. Realizing that we're all trying to figure out this thing called life together helps me remember that I'm not alone...and also reminds me that I'm not alone, so to be available to help the next guy, I can't be so focused on myself.
**It's ok to know and actually say out loud, "Hey, I did that! I...DID...THAT!" and to celebrate my successes. I'm good at acknowledging my failures, I just need to get better at recognizing my successes?
**Raise your hand if you can relate to this. You do something great or make something wonderful and 99 people give you constructive, positive feedback and praises. Then you have 1 schmuck be all negative and who do you focus on? UGH, that's the worst, however learning to focus on the 99 positives is key to success...(I don't know that for sure, it just makes sense so I'll let you know that I'm no professional as to not sound overly fraudulent.) 😉
**Lastly, I think it might be helpful to say out loud, "I'm not being a fraud, I'm growing where I'm planted!", and that should be the end of it. No comparing, no whining, no perfection needed. Just ask for wisdom, do the next thing and see what happens.
I am a believer that I am stewarding what God has given me to do but that's the point to this post, I'm actually doing things. Yes, I am hanging on for the ride but I'm also steering the car. It is true most of the time I don't know what I'm doing but that's ok because I'm teachable and anyway, I've thought I had things figured out and life threw me a curveball and I had to figure out a different way. I have learned so much over the last 2 years and I think it's time I give myself a little credit for a growing business and lose the Imposter Syndrome for good...(or at least till the next time I feel it then I'll reread this post). 👌