It’s still weird for me to write these mostly serious, semi-motivational personal development posts.
One, the style is completely new to me.
Two, I think far too much about the people who read it and know I’m full of crap.
I think about the Facebook crew, the guy I knew in middle school, or the girl I went too far with at summer camp that one year. They’re pulling this up and having a laugh at the absurdity.
It’s a sticking point for me. I suffer from impostor syndrome in the worst way.
Impostor syndrome is this: No matter how much you achieve or authority you gain, you just know eventually people will figure out that you truly have no idea what in the hell you’re doing.
I fight this battle daily over at my professional blogs. I’m a loyalty and engagement expert only in the sense of I’ve put in hours of study and research, but I’ve never been in charge of retention for a company. So when I publish articles, I panic.
To be honest, I rarely pursue being published on third party sites for that reason alone.
They’re watching, and they’re going to expose me. It’ll be humiliating.
I’m working on it. I’ve been called out a couple of times, even called a moron once. I still slept and remained employed.
I’m working on it here, as well. In my heart, I truly think I have some knowledge to share that can turn someone’s life around. Because I’ve done it myself. But I don’t dare make that claim.
No, I couch it with “Golly Gee Aw Shucks!” statements like “I hope this matters to at least one person.”
Because that’s safe. I’m on no limbs. And it’s comfortable.
It’s not other personal development professionals or writers that I worry about, however. The people who hold me back are the people who know I’m a fraud. They’ve encountered me, befriended me, partied with me, rolled in the hay with me, and all sorts of interactions that probably contradict what I’m trying to be now.
Luckily I’m getting back in touch with my right shoulder devil.
He’s my confidence, arrogance on occasion. He says to put myself out there, that the people who hold me back will get over it. No one is ever universally beloved, after all. Villains, real or perceived, are a fact of life.
I’m also getting more familiar with my left shoulder angel. He,with his flowing robe and tiny harp, points out that we’re all impostors. Anyone who’s ever reached for greatness suffers from it. It’s actually beneficial. It keeps us on our toes.
The people who hold me back do so entirely in my own brain. They may not even exist, to be honest. It’s my own impression, homemade learned helplessness.
I’m getting there. In the meantime, I hope they have great lives.