There is a bravery that comes with just being you. Of owning all of who you are, all you have been through, and all you will become.
Being you–and no one else–is hard.
Impostor syndrome is defined as “a psychological pattern in which an individual doubts their accomplishments and has a persistent internalized fear of being exposed as a “fraud”. Despite external evidence of their competence, those experiencing this phenomenon remain convinced that they are frauds, and do not deserve all they have achieved. Individuals with impostorism incorrectly attribute their success to luck, or as a result of deceiving others into thinking they are more intelligent than they perceive themselves to be. While early research focused on the prevalence among high-achieving women, impostor syndrome has been recognized to affect both men and women equally (Wikipedia).”
As a writer, as a creative person, you will have these moments or cycles of not feeling ‘good enough’ or ‘worthy enough’ to do write as you want or like you want.
It’s scary. I, too, in the early part of deciding to pursue a career as a writer, thought about this. I had these patterns. I wanted to be success to accompany this decision. But in that, in doing the other writing-teaching that I do? I had no confidence in it! What does that mean? It meant that I thought having a degree validated what I was doing. And without it, I felt like I didn’t deserve any type of success that could come with it.
It was my husband that reminded me the degree didn’t define my talent, or determine its course. The talent determined everything! The vessel that houses the talent determines its journey!
When he said that to me, my anxiety settled. I could do more, and do more confidently as I did more speaking, writing or teaching.
You determine your success; it is not determined by other people. The accolades are not a substitute for self-worth or self-esteem. Writing is a hobby/career where you are judged by people who don’t know you or have any concept of what you desire to create long-term.
However, I implore you, create anyway. It is the work that is needed in the world–your work is needed in the world! As you create, as you build, as you make space, celebrate the wins. Don’t just make To-Do Lists, and tick off what you complete.
Own the title you give yourself–you’re working so hard for it.