As a self-employed writer and PR consultant and having been brought up a certain way, I hold myself (and sometimes people around me) to very high standards. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I was a scholar who scored straight As and earned big bucks. I was rather, fearful of making mistakes, of under-delivering, of self-perceived mediocrity.
“What if the truth is, I really suck?! What if the client hates my writing?! Maybe I shouldn’t be pitching for this project. I won’t be able to deliver on the client’s expectations!” Meet the most dreaded and most common disease that’s plaguing so many of us – Imposter Syndrome, also known as the irrational fear of being exposed as a fraud.
Thanks to Imposter Syndrome, I downplay my abilities and stick to the safer lane. A project sounds too challenging? Skip. I have lost count of the number of opportunities I’ve said no to because I didn’t think I could do a good job.
Also, until recently, I have had no courage to invest time, money and effort into my hobbies cos well, there’s no way I’d be good enough to one day do these things for a living right?
Truth is, Imposter Syndrome is a vicious self-fulfilling prophecy that limits your success. It stops you from trying your best because you constantly talk yourself out of things. And when you don’t put in 150%, of course you’re never going to excel at what you are passionate about.
Taking the First Step
It took me too many years before realising that Imposter Syndrome was the biggest fear that was holding me back from achieving fulfillment in my life. I cared too much about what others thought of me and I measured my worth based on how others valued my work.
For instance, before 2018, I never thought of starting a site like Iced Mint Tea because, who am I to dish out advice on positive living when I’m working out my own issues? But hey, who wants to hear from a perfect person who doesn’t have any problems? We are all human beings, tiny specks of life who are plonked onto the same planet for better or worse. Why not share our perspectives on life, as long as they are delivered with the best intentions?
So making that impulsive move to register the domain and start populating the site with content was my first step in kicking Imposter Syndrome in the butt. I may not be able to generate posts every day (cos well, paid work is still a priority) but I truly believe this is a massive step in the right direction.
In fact, there are many things that I’m dying to try and I’m taking steps to educate myself in different facets. Tarot reading and silversmithing are just two hobbies that I’m currently cultivating. I may still be an amateur but hey that doesn’t mean I can’t indulge my interests!
Keeping at it
I’m mindful of the fact that one day I may log into this site and start hating all the posts or circling out all of the grammar errors I’ve committed. Negative thinking is never a one-time phase. It comes at you every now and then, but taking stock of tiny achievements and moments of gratitude (through a journal) is one of the easiest ways you can try to pull yourself out of the blues.
Also, there’s this beautiful kickass quote I found off Evil Queen Candles’ Instagram that has really motivated me. 🙂
Let’s share our journey together! What are you hoping to venture into? What is outside of your comfort zone that you wish to pursue? Just make the first move today, I’m sure there will be no regrets!