May 21, 2019

Impostor Syndrome

The Forces of Creation by Louis Dyer

Anyone who puts him/herself out there by creating something new, is bound to feel at one point or another that they're not good enough. That they can't truly compare to [insert their hero(ine)'s name here].

But what they (myself included) need to understand, is that they're different from said hero(in)es, and that doesn't make them bad. Especially if they always try to get better, to improve their craft.

I admit I've been rather pithy with the subject, but if that doesn't inspire you, here's a story from Neil Gaiman, author of a number of fabulous books (some  of which have been turned into movies and/or TV shows, like Good Omens, Stardust, Coraline, American Gods, etc.), that might inspire you better:

"Some years ago, I was lucky enough to be invited to a gathering of great and good people: artists and scientists, writers and discoverers of things. And I felt that at any moment they would realize that I didn't qualify to be there, among these people who had really done things.

On my second or third night there, I was standing at the back of the hall, while a musical entertainment happened, and I started talking to a very nice, polite, elderly gentleman about several things, including our shared first name. And then he pointed to the hall of people, and said words to the effect of, "I just look at all these people, and I think, what the heck am I doing here? They've made amazing things. I just went where I was sent."

And I said, "Yes, but you were the first man on the moon. I think that counts for something."

And I felt a bit better. Because if Neil Armstrong felt like an impostor, maybe everyone did. Maybe there weren't any grownups, only people who had worked hard and also gotten lucky and were slightly out of their depth, all of us doing the best job we could, which is all we can really hope for."


Welcome to the end times...

PS: Proof of two Neils together here for those of you who want it :)

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