#009 – Imposter (Unedited)

I am writing something long and it doesn’t mean anything. Searching for a topic, just writing without thinking. Thinking of meaning, of purpose, of mastery, of autonomy. These don’t feel like original thoughts. And my internal judge is constantly prattling away at me. Will people find this interesting? Is it meaningful? Is it worthwhile? Is it significant? How will people perceive me because of this? Is my tone right? Am I coming off as too introspective? Too thought leaderish? Too abstract? Too vague?
The worst thing is, I’m already a reputable author. Or something like that. I can’t even remember what it’s like to try to put something out into the world when you aren’t already known for something. When you feel like “Oh, if they ignore it or if they hate it, I must suck.”
I don’t feel that way. I know I can get four hundred extra chances if I screw this one up. But I do feel, pretty much constantly, like most of what I do is crap and people only remember the wins.
It’s absolutely frustrating decades in to feel that way, even when you’ve made objective progress. That internal judge, who calls you an imposter. It doesn’t go away. It doesn’t leave you alone. It takes on a different form, which may be just as painful.
It doesn’t tell you, “You suck” but instead “You are better than this.” Stop being lazy. Stop being sloppy. Stop being complacent. Stop being mediocre. You are better than this and if you don’t live up to your own name, then you don’t deserve anything good.
Digging through the library of past successes and failures, constantly. Retracing old dreams and forming new ones. Forever feeling trapped in a shadow of myself. Lost.
But I gotta pretend I’m not. Right?
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