“Imposter syndrome?” my friend asked after I told her my hesitations about a project I was working on and all the reasons I felt unqualified. I had never heard the term and thought she was implying that I really was unqualified. Only after looking up “imposter syndrome” did I realize she was assuring me that my feelings of inadequacy were just that: feelings.
I’m not a naturally confident person. I second-guess what I say in conversations and preface my thoughts as suggestions, peppered with “might,” “maybe,” “perhaps,” and “if that works for you.” In text messages, I usually add an emoji to clarify that I won’t be disappointed if the other person ignores my suggestions.
When I was a teenager, I thought I would have everything figured out when I became an adult. That 18 was the magical age when I would become confident in everything I did because I would know everything there is to know about everything.
Then I turned 18 and felt no closer to knowing…