Dealing with self-doubt

On a walk home the other day, I ended up feeling the first signs of what I thought might be imposter syndrome. I chat about what it felt like, and how I moved into and through it.

Today I’m going to talk a little bit about imposter syndrome. A few weeks ago, I was walking home and I started to feel a little bit of anxiety and a lot of self-doubt. And I thought that I was experiencing imposter syndrome. It’s possible that’s what it was. Although as I sit here, I’m not totally sure. But I can say, it was the closest to imposter syndrome that I’ve ever experienced, I think.

Prior to this, for the most part when I’ve been working on things, it’s been really clear if I’ve been good at these things, or bad at these things. Most things have been easy for me to put on a scale. I’m either very good at something, and usually that comes from training, and working at it, and practice, and maybe a little talent, and interest, and feeling as though I have resources in order to continue to get better. I feel like I’m in my domain, I feel like I’m good at this, I know what I am doing. If I’m in that space, and I don’t know a little something I’ll look it up, and I’ll integrate it into my work. This is good. So, this has often been the case for me when I’ve been working as a designer, and oftentimes as an artist. When I’m making art, even if there are times when I don’t totally feel confident about what I am doing, I still feel as though I’m in my domain. 

The teaching was kind of the same. When I first started teaching, I was kind of bad at it. The first few classes I taught I didn’t feel confident. I didn’t really know what I was doing, but it was clear why. I didn’t have a lot of experience, I didn’t have a lot of training. I just kind of jumped in, and started, and then learned as I went along the way. And that was okay. I was’t good at it, but I thought I could be good at it. And that was exciting because it had been a little while since I had stepped into a space where I wasn’t good at something. But it gave me the opportunity to strive to get better which was really exciting. 

Now that I am gong into a slightly new territory, I think the imposter syndrome comes up because it becomes unclear what I am good at, and unclear what I am bad at. And so, there a big question mark for me. 

Taking a look at imposter syndrome online, it seems like a key part of it is this fear of being exposed as a fraud. I think the reason I might not have gone into the imposter syndrome is that I just admitted that I was feeling it as soon as I felt like it was coming up. I think if I hadn’t admitted it, then I would be afraid of being exposed.

Even doing something like making this recording, I kind of break through a fear of being exposed because I’m just telling you. If you are listening to this, you know. There’s no hiding. If you bump into me in the co-working space where I’m working, and you want to talk about imposter syndrome, I’ll talk about it. But, it’s something that I’m going to be watching and I’m curious if I really did experience what people describe as imposter syndrome.