“The impostor syndrome, sometimes called impostor phenomenon or fraud syndrome, is a psychological phenomenon in which people are unable to internalize their accomplishments. . . . Despite external evidence of their competence, those with the syndrome remain convinced that they are frauds and do not deserve the success they have achieved. Proof of success is dismissed as luck, timing, or as a result of deceiving others into thinking they are more intelligent and competent than they believe themselves to be.” Impostor Syndrome
Despite my drive to make straight A’s and get my teachers’ approval, I still am not convinced that I am deserving of the success I have. A friend in graduate school described a person to me: smart, multi-lingual, personable, knowledgeable about art, music, history, and literature, a good conversationalist, and so on. When I told him that I wanted to meet this person, as she sounded very interesting, he told me he was describing me. Even today, my response is, “Nope, no way. Me, I’m barely holding on by the skin of my teeth, and it’s a miracle I’ve gotten through school, kept a job, have friends that seem to like me, and children who seem to think I’m okay.” It took over fifteen years before I stopped worrying that my husband would leave when he found out what a failure I really was. Now I think he’s just a masochist, plain and simple.
Well, I’m here to say I’m tired of feeling like this; it has kept from doing so many things, from making new friends to contemplating different jobs. I don’t know if I’m any good at all at what I want to do, but I’m going to try anyway. Academia has not fulfilled me, but only made me feel more insecure. How much more insecure can writing make me feel? So, I’m tweaking my goals. Yeah, I know, we’re nearly into December, but hey, it’s ROW80 and I can tweak if I want to 🙂
I bought my own domain a few months back, but have been too scared to take the step; I’m also afraid of the learning curve, but to be honest, I usually do okay with tech things. I think that as long as it all looked amateurish I felt safe, as though I could always claim it was a whim or just dabbling. Well, today ends that. I’m going to work hard on the new domain. Some of it may go quickly, but some things may make the blogs look like construction zones for a few weeks. I have been wanting to get some real fonts on the blogs; I am a printer’s daughter and the font on the free WP sites is TERRIBLE. I want to get the pages figured out and laid out nicely. I want to give it a real shot. I may fail, but I will fail in style. So, new writing goals:
1. Move to the new domain.
2. Make both Leavekeeping and Lapidary Prose look a lot better than they do now.
3. Figure out my themes and schedules: Leavekeeping is turning into a personal blog as well as a ROW80 check-in; Lapidary Prose is a mix of personal and research/history, but I need to see where I want to go.
4. Write about 10-20 posts to figure out what I’m doing.
5. Post some of the 10-20 and trash the ones that don’t work.
Health: I lost half a pound this past week and a half. Not great, but hey, it was Thanksgiving.
Exercise: I haven’t moved into much harder exercise yet, but I am walking more purposefully, and taking the steps at work–even to the fifth floor, and feeling it.
Family: Fail. Tired, and being selfish. I did talk to my dad last night briefly. I also have been helping my husband more around the house. He has been doing most of the tasks since I started doing ROW80, lord love him, but I’ve been able to do more, since I can think and fold laundry, muse and load the dishwasher. Ah, menial tasks!
Friends: In my worst failing, I withdraw from friends when I need them the most.
Writing: In addition to figuring out the new goals above, I’ve been working on the craft. I started briefly with outlining my stories, which showed me gaping holes in the conflicts, needs and desires of some of the characters. It’s good to know where to start, and I have purchased several craft books that have been recommended by fellow ROWers. The academic writing is coming along well–it really is my comfort zone.
Day Job: More applications, and a nibble from one employer. Wish me luck!
A productive last day to all our NaNoers; a very lovely start to December for you all. As always, please go encourage the rest of the ROWers here.