Have you ever felt the infamous imposter syndrome? If you don't know what that is, it is basically when you are in a new position and feel as if you aren't meant to be there and that someone will find out that you're an imposter.
Having this feeling SUCKS. Because when you feel like you aren't meant to be there, your energy shifts. You get anxious all the time and your confidence goes down. Which is taking away from the abilities that got you there in the first place.
Sometimes this feeling comes from a new position, internship, class at school, or even a new MBA/Degree. It is a normal feeling that we need to combat to unleash our true potential.
Quick Story: I just started an Internship at Discovery Inc.!!!! Which how I got the position was crazy. They already wanted me and pretty much wanted to get to know me. Different than the other interviews I had this spring. I was excited that I got a big internship at ONE of the BIGGEST MEDIA Companies, but I felt out of place intstantly. An editorial and social media intern? I mean yes I have wrote some pieces but I'm not confident in my abilities, and yes I have created some posts for some companies prior. Majority of the feedback were positive, But one recent internship coordinator told me that my posts were decent and that they wanted to exploit my work. So I was feeling a bit weird about my work that I will have to do majority of the time for this internship. That feeling was there for a month later until the internship started. I had to think and use some of these tips that eased my self doubt up to this moment. Now I am using my full potential in my internship and I feel great!
Tip 1: Understand that you and your abilities is what has got you this far. Don't underestimate it .
You did the work, prepared, took time in your craft, and will continue to push yourself. That time was not taken for granted. Someone which is the person who brought you in, saw something in you, your abilities. You were wanted. Think about that the next time when you feel out of place. You were PLACED into that position because they believed in you.
Tip 2: You will continue to be a work in progress. Don't let critics hinder you.
When I mentioned that coordinator, it was a true moment. I was offended because there was no solution. If my social posts weren't good, then were is the constructive critisism for me to grow? But in the next breath, said that they liked my work and wanted to exploit me. So that was a weird moment for me. I also had a moment where the same coordinator told me that you had all these experiences so why can't you do this? Which also was hard because I still needed to practice my skills without being expected to do something to perfection. That definitely hindered my confidence in my work. When I started my internship with Discovery Inc, they understood that I am still growing and will continue to hone my skills. But they also want to work with me because I have those abilities mentioned before that I was nervous about. Keep going at it! Every piece you write, video you watch in your field, editing you are trying to master will all go into the Big picture of the life you want. Don't ever feel defeated.
Tip 3: Just Show up and Show out every time!
This is a big one. Even with all the feelings you have about yourself and abilities all you need to do is show up. Yes. Just show up to the class, job, internship, job interview and do your best even if you feel like it doesn't amount to anything. Because it does. You will start to feel that you do deserve to be there and that every day is a chance to learn something new. When I came into my internship and started working, I felt alive in a way. With my prior internship, I felt that this field wasn't for me. I was STRESSED everyday. Every time I received a notification from the coordinator, I got extremely anxious. And I didn't want to feel that way. This internship I am in right now, I feel like I am meant to be here. I am uncomfortable in a way that is beneficial to me in order to grow and that I can take this experience to the next media job I obtain after graduation.
How do YOU combat self-doubt in your abilities?