a person who acts in an affected manner in order to impress others.
synonyms: exhibitionist, poseur, posturer, fake
Rewind back to the 1980’s with me…
Remember calling those fakes who would come to the clubs or shows a poser? That was the ultimate insult in the scene!
Fast forward to today…
Ever since I got an email last week telling me that a piece of my art made it past the jury selection and is going to be in The Detroit Dirty Show (International Erotic Art Exhibition), I’ve felt like a poser. A fake. A fraud. A lucky schmuck.
I haven’t been able to fully bask in my accomplishment because my mind is busy coming up with a zillion and one reasons why I shouldn’t -- as if at any given moment I will be discovered as a no-talent fraud.
I think to the scene in The Addams Family movie when Wednesday Addams opens the door to Uncle Fester’s room and announces, “You ARE a fake!“
My mind actually spins around a few specific dialogs:
“Look at how many pieces over the years that didn’t make it in!”
“Look at how incredibly fucked up the rest of your life is! You cannot possibly allow yourself to celebrate and be happy with a clear conscience while everything else is fucked up!”
“If these people only knew how much a fuck up you are, they wouldn’t be so happy for you.”
I’ve even convinced myself that I not only don’t deserve this honor but that now the universe is going to come crashing down on me in equal comparison to the good I’ve been blessed with.
This morning in the haze of waking up, I Googled “feeling like a fraud” to see if anyone else in the world ever felt like this.
I found out that this feeling is called Impostor Syndrome -- and I have it bad.
Turns out, so do a lot of other people, so I’m not alone in the world. I decided this was something that needed to be voiced not only to help me but to help others out there.
So, like most people who suffer from this mad brainwashing, it stems from a fucked up childhood and dysfunctional parenting. Yeah, that’s right, I still haven’t completely conquered my arch nemesis, Mom-ster, yet. This in and of itself is disheartening to me, but nothing I cannot overcome.
Another trigger for Impostor Syndrome is the same thing that holds most people back from stepping out of their comfort zone -- fear. The downplay in our minds is a subconscious prep for an ego-crushing fall.
What’s that saying? Fall down seven times, get up eight.
This is where in my head I let out a little “yay!” as I have no fear of failing, I came to terms with failure many years ago. Failing means at least I tried -- but other’s might not have that intestinal fortitude like I do.
However, when people tell me things like, “You’re awesome!” in the back of my mind I think, “OMG if they only knew what a failure I am or how fucked up I used to be they totally wouldn’t be saying that!”
I’ve even caught myself openly telling people, “Oh man if you would’ve known me back in the day...” I still find it difficult to accept (and absorb) compliments.
Impostor Syndrome is also part of why some people cannot let go and be themselves in relationships, or sadly, just be in a relationship. It’s like “OMG this person is totally great and they think I am too, but if they only saw me for the hot mess I am they wouldn’t think so highly of me and I’ll end up crushed and alone!” I did mention I have Impostor Syndrome bad, right?
This fucked up brainwashing also blocks us from all the good things in life -- from prosperity and abundance flowing like rivers into our lives. This is a definite roadblock for those (like me) working the Law of Attraction in our lives!
The time to start ignoring that worried and pessimistic voice until it shrivels up and disappears is now -- I am speaking not only to myself but to anyone out there reading this who has experienced this feeling of being a fake or a fraud.
So with a New Year just around the corner, right now is an excellent time to acknowledge this horrendous psyche, confidence, and ego-crushing infestation in our minds and consciously work to eliminate it from our lives.
We deserve positive energies, amazing people, and wonderful otherworldly happenings in our lives!
Shine like the whole universe is yours.