For some reason or the other, I have always felt unsure and indecisive of myself.
I felt it may have something to do with my childhood. Growing up I was sent to live with my grandparents and though I felt loved, I did not feel like I belonged. At the same time, when I saw my parents and sister who all lived together happily, I also felt I did not belong because I was not a part of their dynamic.
At school, the age of 6 I used to leave at lunchtime because I did not identify.
In middle school, the same.
In high school, the same.
In medical school, the same.
Working at the hospital as a surgical resident.
I could not have possibly been imposing myself in any of those scenarios.
But. I have always felt different. Like everyone else was in on something and I had missed the memo.
I often wonder why I became that way. In effect, it has translated into my life. I am scared to let go. Scared of losing control. To the point where I cannot turn a corner riding a bicycle or let go of rails when I attempt ice skating.
It sounds silly.
As I have gotten older, I have recognized this about myself and attempting to stop this thinking.
For sometimes, Imposter syndrome is simply created in our minds.
We feel as though we do not have what it takes. It is drilled into our minds. You can’t do this because you are too young, too short, a girl, a woman, too inexperienced.
Then when we finally do defeat the odds, make it in the world we still feel it is not enough. Everyone else is smarter, stronger, more capable, more talented. We think we simply slipped through the cracks. Undetected. Maybe they won't find out and realize that we've infiltrated.
So we hide. We prefer to become invisible. We stay quiet when questions are asked because we are unsure of how we would sound even though we know the correct answers and think them as we mouth them silently. We wait until everyone else is chosen. We let everyone else go in front of us. We take the remains. The morsels. The Leftovers. And we are happy with it. Because we are happy just to be a part of it.
When the attention is on us, we are skeptical. What do they want? This is a joke. A prank. A bet.
This boy would never be into me.
This opportunity would never come.
This school would never pick me.
I am not smart enough.
Not bright enough.
The trouble is, I always wanted to belong.
The bigger trouble is, I was in the way of myself.
After a while, you have to stop blaming your demons on your childhood. And take control of yourself. If you think you don’t know enough about something, learn. Learn to ask, when an opportunity presents, take it. Help. become an expert in your field. People won’t take you seriously until you do.
Do the research.
Find a mentor. understand that mentors are also human and don’t expect them to be infallible. But its good to have an idea of how you want to fashion your life and career.
BE a mentor.
Find someone who is where you once were. Let them know that they aren’t the only ones feeling this way and they can get past their mental barriers.
This is hard. I've even done it in the first paragraph. But if you think about it, have you ever met someone you know who is so sure of themselves that you start believing it too?
Love the person you are. Accept the person you are. You are your own worst enemy, critic, saboteur. Release yourself from the chains you have tied yourself to. Break barriers and shine on.
You are worth it.
You are invited.
You are more than enough.
You are pretty enough.
For my darling, it was you all along. You just had to love yourself.