Impostor Syndrome

nervousI’m an editor with 14 years of experience. (FOURTEEN YEARS? WOW. Where did the time go?) Because of my “expertise,” I’ve been asked to give presentations at work about the importance of editing and why project managers at my ad agency should use it. (Utilize? haha) I put expertise in quotation marks because I don’t feel like I’m much of an expert with less than 20 years of experience. But even with 20 years of experience, I still think I’d feel like a novice.

I try to tell myself that I’m qualified to speak on editing in medicine and pharma. I’ve been copy editing since 2004. I’m good, right? I’ve worked in the ad industry for 10 years. I successfully freelanced for the majority of that time.

But I still struggle with the idea of what makes me qualified to speak on editing. What do I bring to the table that no one else does? And I can’t figure that out. Maybe it’s my experience in pharma? My experience in marketing & advertising?

I also realize that I have impostor syndrome. Even though I probably know more than I think I do, I project this air of confidence that I’m so smart and know what I’m talking about. You can take the impostor syndrome test here.

I’m scared of failure. I’m scared of someone saying,”That doesn’t make sense at all. Do you really know what you’re talking about?” I’ve been told I’m a good presenter, but I loathe it because I think I’m never good enough. (I could’ve said this differently or I could’ve done that differently.) I always reflect on the things that went wrong rather than the things that went right. I’m SUPER aware of my flaws (uh, um, ah, well) and maybe have a poor read on the audience’s reaction. (Although I don’t think I do. They tend to look otherwise occupied or bored.)

All I want to do is make myself proud. Feel content with where I am professionally. And I don’t know that I ever will.

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