I think it’s safe to assume this year, 2020, has not been what anyone expected. I, for one, went into the year thinking “this is the year of Casie!”. It was going to be all about me. All vacations were going to be my choice. I was going to work hard, see incredible outcomes, and be rewarded in every aspect of life. This year was going to be the best one yet.
Then March happened.
Since March, everything has changed. I’m back living at my parents house so I won’t be alone 24/7 at my apartment. I’ve had to say goodbye to colleagues who didn’t deserve to lose their jobs. I’m continuing to see the hurt of a community who deserves more than this world has ever offered them. I’m seeing the ugliness of human beings, while also seeing the humanity in others. In summary, this year has not been what we expected.
Through all of these changes, I was not immune to changes to my job. This summer, I was temporarily given the responsibilities that initially landed on three people (one who would be on maternity leave and one I would take over for good). My days quickly filled with meetings, phone calls, and extra long to-do lists. I found myself busier than ever, with very little time to take a breath. Some frequent visitors in my life were stress headaches, cracking my knuckles, a short fuse, and eating junk food.
Yet, against all odds and feeling set up to fail, I found my confidence growing and my time management skills strengthening. While I was stressed, I never once felt like I was a team of one. I saw my manager and colleagues do whatever they could to see me succeed, even if that meant listening to my bogus stories about life outside of work to give me a sense of relief.
And now I sit here, back to doing my new workload, and I look back on this summer. I somehow made it through and kept everything afloat. Not only that, I exceeded some expectations and made a name for myself around my organization.
Yet, saying I’m proud of myself feels wrong, unearned, and boastful.
Why is that? There’s no way I’m the only person who can easily say I’m proud of you to a friend or colleague, but not myself. Looking in the mirror or to my manager during a check-in saying “I’m proud of myself” seems like the most difficult and unattainable task.
Then, like the universe wanted to talk to me, I saw an Instragram post about the Impostor Syndrome. This is the internal experience of believing that you are not as competent as others perceive you to be. Simply, I sit here after accomplishing so much and still feel like a phony, like I don’t belong where I am and I only got here because of dumb luck.
And wow if that isn’t me.
My entire life, I’ve struggled with self-doubt, being unable to assess my competence and skills realistically, berating my performance through self-deprecating humor, and being fearful I won’t live up to what others expect of me.
When in reality, I’m awesome. I work hard, I empathize and connect with people, I communicate well, and adapt to situations quicker than most.
I’ve been underselling myself for years by thinking that being humble is better than making others uncomfortable with my success. And maybe I still think that way. Throughout this entire post, I’ve struggled to not include some type of self-deprecating joke to soften the mood.
If you’ve ever felt this way, know you’re not alone. I’m right there with you and we’ll figure out a way to comfortably and confidently say to ourselves that we’re proud of us. I’m here to say, it’s okay to be proud of yourself, but can’t quite say it to others. That’s a battle for another day.
Thanks for reading,
P.S. It’s good to be back on the blog. I was hit with inspiration and had to get it out of my head. Lately, it hasn’t felt right to write. So I took my time. Who knows when I’ll get another post out there.