A week ago, I opened my email to find a lovely message from Edutopia telling me they had published my article. The sequence of my response went something like this:
“Woo-hoo! I feel validated!”
[clicking on my article] “Wait. I wrote and submitted this back in November. Is it even as relevant anymore?”
[frantically rereading my article] “Shoot, I would totally reword this entire section today!”
[reaching the end of the article] “How did I think that people would actually benefit by this?”
[a few hours later after the retweets started coming] “Wow, people are reading this!”
[a few seconds later] “Shoot, people are reading this! What if they read my bio and see I’m not even in the classroom right now? Or won’t they scoff at the fact that I’ve only taught for 4 years?” There’s no way this will keep up…”
[the weekend after] “Um, a lot of people are reading this. And commenting on it. And sharing it. I can feel good about that, right?”
And this morning, exactly one week later, I came across, “Overcoming Imposter Syndrome.” Though centered on the common struggle experienced by designers, I realized that this “Imposter Syndrome” nails it for me as an educational blogger, too. The fear of being “found out,” the hesitation to share, the worry of being under-qualified.
But it’s comforting to know this is a shared human experience. And those dark and shady fears look quite different when they’re named and standing together in the light.
Because the truth is, our individual stories and voices matter. They are making a difference. Even if our only audience is ourselves. These words are journeys, helping us better make sense of the world, and to become better teachers, better designers, better people. And that’s the truth to hold on to.
Have you ever felt the “imposter syndrome?” Please share your experience in comments!