Imposter Syndrome – Will We Ever Feel “Good Enough”?

Recently, I’ve had some enquiries about my copywriting business.

Exciting right?

Well, can someone please tell my brain this!

This whole working for myself malarkey still feels very new to me, even though I’ve been doing it for a good few months now. So why did I have a full-on meltdown when I recently got a serious enquiry about my services?

I’ve written about imposter syndrome before and here it is again, hitting me bloody hard.

I recently finished writing some draft posts for my own business and felt pretty happy about what I had produced. I thought I would check my emails one last time before logging off and to my shock someone had completed my client questionnaire!

My stomach flipped and I did what any self-respecting business owner does. I shut down my computer and ran out of the room.

I sat downstairs hiding from my computer, all the time my brain on high alert. I soon realised that I wasn’t going to forget about the email anytime soon so I logged into my emails on my iPad and scanned through the questionnaire.

I was in utter disbelief that someone was even interested in my services and I felt like a complete fraud, I can’t do this! What am I even doing? How was I supposed to respond? What if I don’t know what I’m talking about?

I spewed out all of my thoughts to the husband who reminded me that I was perfectly capable, that I had been writing for a while, this was all part of the experience of starting a business.

I responded to the client and arranged to have a call with them the following week. I found myself getting really stressed out about it, I’m not even sure what I was stressed about, what’s the worst that could happen? If they decided that they didn’t want to use my services, normal life would resume, and I would be no worse off.

During that week, I had a conversation with my brother and I was telling him how anxious I was about this call, he was completely shocked, he said he always thought I was very confident and never thought I would be so anxious about these things as I was good at what I do.

Then when I was watching Married At First Sight Australia — which in my opinion is the best series yet — There were people on there who appeared to have it all together, saying how they didn’t feel good enough.

I went for a massage later that week and I was speaking to the therapist about how I felt and she told me that her friend, who was CEO of a big company also felt the same at first.

It then got me thinking, how many of those people who we compare ourselves to, who we think have it all together, who we think have what we want, simply don’t?

They feel just like we do. They compare themselves to others and feel like an imposter.

Does anybody really have it all together all of the time?

When I did have the call, it went pretty well. I will still really nervous and when they asked me the first question, my initial reaction was panic, but then I realised I knew the answer and the reason I knew the answer was because I had been putting in the work.

It was a great learning experience for me and when the nerves were gone and I could think straight, I realised that when I had done my job in banking for over 20 years, I felt the exact same feeling before I went into meetings, I would question myself about my knowledge, worried that I would be found out that I didn’t know what I was doing. 

But I did know what I was doing, I don’t think I would have been able to fake an entire career!

Imposter syndrome doesn’t just happen to people who are new to something, it can happen to any one of us, at any time. Now that I am armed with this realisation, I can remind myself that I am an imposter syndrome survivor and the person on the other end of the phone probably is too.

2023-04-20 14:08:00

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