The Imposter

I’ve been thinking about the imposter syndrome. We all have it. We all think and even continue to think we are imposters of some kind. The question posed in our undisciplined moments of thinking is ‘am I good enough to be here?’ We want to somehow be chosen by someone else, something else beyond us that gives us the validation, who will say ‘you’re good enough’; and we prefer to think that humility is when we play the devil’s advocate to their recognition and find excuses where we are not. And we mistake imposter syndrome for some sort of extreme humility.

But really, who did we think is a imposter? What kind of person is he? And how are we really comparing to him rather than comparing to the ‘others in the group’.

You can pretend to care, but you can’t pretend to show up.

George L. Bell

I think an imposter is one who pretends to care about the work; but who doesn’t show up for the work that he’s supposed to do. He’s the one who claims to be making sacrifices for the work but if he does turn up, he is unprepared and shows no commitment.

The non-imposter, or if I may call, ‘the professional’, is the one who cares about the work, shows up for the work, makes sacrifice to prepare for his/her delivery and continues to show up regardless of what the critics says or what his/her performance may be for that one moment, or the few instances. He is not an imposter because he shows up again and again for the work that he is supposed to do.

So instead of sitting around letting your mind dwell on how you might not be good enough, why don’t you discipline your thinking into considering how you can be, or how you already are, the professional. What is the next thing you’re going to do to prepare yourself, to show up for the work, to commit to the work?

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