I’m rapidly approaching the final year of my twenties *nervous laughs*. So, there’s been a little bit of reflecting going on lately. Both on the dreams I’ve made a reality so far… and the things I haven’t shaken off yet. The main one being ‘imposter syndrome’.
Imposter syndrome is where, despite everything you’ve accomplished in your life so far, you feel like a total fraud. And the fear is that at some point, everyone around you is going to figure that out, too.
I guess I always thought that eventually if I’d achieved enough, at some point I’d feel like I was good enough. But that’s just never really happened. It creeps up on me randomly all the time – even as I write a post like this. It usually goes something like this in my head:
Me: ‘You know, I think I’ve got this!’
Me, five minutes later: ‘But, what if I’m actually terrible and people don’t like me?’
I’m obviously not alone though, most of my close friends I’ve spoken to can relate. And you know what? You’d be surprised at how many confident, seemingly thriving people you know feel exactly the same. A lot of it comes down to not being able to look at our own lives without comparing them. I struggle to get through the day without feeling bad that I’m not as beautiful, as smart or as successful as I feel that everyone around me is. And right now, our social media feeds are full of filtered content where almost every person you follow seems to be living their best life. Each scroll feels like a constant stream of promotions, engagements and babies – how can you not feel inadequate after that?
I’m not sure if you can ever stop comparing yourself completely. But, what I do know is the more you can stay in your lane and focus on your own growth, the happier and more content you’ll eventually become.
When I was talking about all of this recently, someone I look up to a lot pointed out that the thing to remember is that you’re in ‘the room’. And you’re in the room for a reason. If you weren’t talented and valued, you wouldn’t be there – it’s that simple. All of your experience, skills and who you are as a person have led you to where you are today. If people didn’t believe in that or believe in you, they wouldn’t want you there. She was completely right.
Owning who you are and knowing your worth doesn’t happen overnight. It’s something you have to work on and reinforce every single day. But, that’s the one thing that’s really helped me start to change how I see myself. We all bring something unique to the table and that’s what’s earned us our place at it. So, try to remember that the next time you doubt that you deserve yours.