"I have written eleven books, but each time I think, 'uh oh, they're going to find out now. I've run a game on everybody, and they're going to find me out.' "
– Maya Angelou
I have just completed my first published book and I am mixed with emotions; Pride, Happiness, Worry, Excitement, Scared...you get it. As people have congratulated me, I was down playing my achievement until someone brought it to my attention. In conversation it was made clear that I have accomplished many things and have always downplayed my 'awesomeness' (their words, not mine). As I thought about it, I can see what they are saying. I have never wanted to be seen as prideful, egotistical, or narcissistic and have always responded with a small smile and a thank you.
I am not disregarding my approach. I believe in humility and showing gratitude, but I need to start 'tooting my own horn' a bit, as they say. To help get past my feelings of being an imposter in my successes, I have begun to focus on these items as they pertain to me:
1. Talk MY talk - I am not an 'expert' on much, but I can share what I know and talk on my experiences.
2. Don't compare - I remind myself that nobody has it all together and I deserve good in my life just as much as the next person. Holding back would be wasteful.
3. Provide value - By focusing on how my work can help others pulls focus off of me.
4. Take note - Truly appreciate and respond to those who say nice things to me. To show them they are valued to me and to hold that warm fuzzy for when I need it most.
I always said I would 'fake it 'til I make it,' I just wasn't prepared for the part when I had to start validating that I was 'making it.'
Keep on pushing! Keep on creating! Keep on being your authentic self!
Charmaine N. Houck
Advocate of Adventure