The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]


We Are All Hiding Something …

So much for not posting for 3 weeks eh?

For what it’s worth, I officially start writing my rubbish again on Monday.

What’s the difference between the posts I’ve been writing and the posts I will be writing?

Apart from the fact I’ll allow you all to insult me in the comments?

Errrrrm, that’s it.

But this one is quite important because it’s something I hear talked about a lot.

Imposter syndrome.

Every industry has people who suffer for it, but right now, I’m hearing a lot of planners talk about it. Doesn’t matter if they are top of their profession or new into it, somewhere along the line they feel it.

I know I do.

And while I know it can be massively destructive – undermining your confidence and self belief – it isn’t all bad.

I know, that sounds mad … but hang in there.

Recently I was talking to one of the best planners in the world. Yes, I appreciate that’s a subjective comment, but if you knew who I was talking about – saw the work they have consistently been a part of – you’d probably agree they’re in the top 5 globally.

Anyway they were telling me how they felt imposter syndrome. That they were going to get ‘found out’ any day soon and then their career would be over. Cast aside by an industry who would point at them and laugh and then use their name as a warning to any new entrant into the industry of what not to do.

And then I said, “maybe that’s what makes you so good”.

That shut them up.

And when they asked me what the fuck I was talking about, I said that maybe that was part of the reason they were so brilliant. That they were never so comfortable with their abilities and title that they would ever take their foot off the gas … that they would ever stop exploring every possibility … that they would ever not write a million different versions of the same brief until they found the one they thought had the most creative potential.

Silence.

Then they said, “but it can hurt so much”.

And I acknowledged it can. But I then added that I imagine being as good as them does not come without pain, sacrifice, tension, scars and sheer utter graft … so while they experience times where they wish they didn’t have to feel that way, the thing they should really worry about is if they didn’t.

Now please don’t think I am advocating pain and suffering. I appreciate how demoralising and destructive it can be. I also think it’s a subject that should be talked about more to both destroy the stigma and help people feel they are not alone.

I can tell you for a fact it is something I have – and continue to – suffer a lot.

However, until you feel confident to speak about it or get help for it – and you can get help for it, because it’s a real situation with many different expressions – maybe you can reframe what it is doing to you.

Not bringing you down, but possibly pushing you further.

I’m here to chat should anyone wish to.

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There’s a big difference between imposter syndrome and gaslighting.

One is where you are involuntarily undermining your own self-confidence, whereas the other is driven by others doing it to you.

Both are debilitating, so ensure you know which one you are dealing with to get the appropriate help.

For those experiencing the latter, there is Corporate Gaslighting … a place where you can see you are not alone and start taking steps to changing your situation. I am also here for that should you need or wish to talk.

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