We were all set to fly to Las Vegas for our holiday. This year we managed to bag a bargain on first class tickets, a new and probably one off experience to us, so excitement was high!
In the airport lounge the staff kept having little sideways glances, but were very professional and served us graciously. Finally the flight was called and off we went to get on the flight. I showed my ticket to the attendant, who immediately called the supervisor. “I’m very sorry madam, there’s an issue with your seat, you’re just not the kind of passenger we allow in first class…I mean…look at you”.
Ok, that obviously didn’t actually happen. The staff were fabulous and the journey very comfortable. But I didn’t feel good enough to be there, and I was worried about getting found out and being sent to my rightful place.
At work I worry I’ll get found out as just being lucky for achieving targets and getting good performance ratings, even though these results have been consistent for the last few years. The occasions something goes wrong or I fall below target prove I’m not really good enough.
When I go to training or networking events I fear my credentials will be questioned. I’ve got qualifications and certificates to back me up…but surely these people must be able to see I don’t belong?
I realise this happens quite a lot, and is probably what stops me going to fancy restaurants or makes me feel awkward when talking about my skills and experience. I’m scared someone will call me out and expose me for a fraud.
It turns out that this is called imposter syndrome and around 70% of us will experience it at some point (or at many points!) And it’s more prevalent in intelligent women than other demographics.
From now on I’m going to catch myself when I hear my thoughts start telling me this story and question it.
I’ve paid for my ticket, I’ve as much right to be there as the other passengers.
I’m good at my job and my good results reflect that.
I work hard to learn and practice my skills, and they are enough.
That compliment was genuine, they weren’t just being nice.
Actually I am successful because I worked bloody hard.
I realise that after a previous blog, I should have learned not to give a f**k about what other people think of me…and that it’s out of my control…but I haven’t mastered it yet, I’m still practising.
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