The Real Imposter Syndrome

Background image of monarch butterfly against blurred yellow flowers. Text over image states: Who am I NOT to? 
Who am I to see my gifts, my calling, my natural tendencies and still choose to hide who I am?
Who am I to not impact the world with my unique perspective?
Who am I to believe your opinion of me supersedes my purpose?
Who am I to live inauthentically?
Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist

Who am I NOT to?

I am a solution, not a problem.

I am different because I was meant to add something new.

I am here because our world was a short a Me.

I am needed… despite what they told me.

I am a blessing… despite how they treated me.

I have a purpose… even if I don’t see it clearly…..

I can see what makes me smile.

I can see my gifts and skills.

I can see what comes easy.

I can see my natural tendencies.

I can see what lights me up—my passions and my interests.

I can see what I investigate… what I love to learn about.

I can see what I hate, what infuriates me, what I’d love to change….

I can see that there is more I’d love to do….

…. and who am I not to?

Who am I to ignore what calls me—the secret gifts I am afraid to explore?

What if that one thing that keeps nagging me is exactly why I am here?

Who am I to not try because I expect to fail?

Who am I to be ready but so afraid of their response that I never begin?

Who am I to refuse to become who I came here to be?

Who am I to deny the world the truest version of me?

Who am I to spend my life as anything less than who I am?

Who am to decide it’s easier to be an imposter than deal with their criticism?

Who am I to let anyone keep me from being me?

Lately, I’ve had this deep knowing that there is more for me—that it’s time to do something more. I know I am holding back, even if no one else knows. I know exactly what that thing is and have a pretty clear idea of what I need to do next. But I’m not doing it. I’m not making time for it. I am clear that I am here to do more than what I’ve done. Chances are, you feel this way, too.

Is there something within you that you know is yours to do—something you’ve been putting off?

What is holding you back? What thoughts come up when you think about moving forward? Ask yourself. Get a journal or make a note somewhere private, record a voice note in your phone and answer the questions. You deserve to be honest with yourself about what’s holding you from being more you.

What if our fears are not reasons to avoid next steps, but actually our mind’s way of getting us to consider all our next steps, and get prepared?

What if the next step isn’t to do the thing? What if the next step is to see the possibilities—to make the What if it works list?

What if the next step is to brainstorm solutions to our inner objections?

What if the next step is to list our fears, then go through them one-by-one, and get curious asking, “If this happens, then what could I do?”

What if we decide to work through whatever we have to work through in order to live more authentically?

Here’s a powerful tip that I learned many years ago from one of my favorite books. It’s great book for taking next steps on your dreams called, Making Your Dreams Come True by Marcia Wieder. This my paraphrased and amended version of her activity, so grab her book to get the full steps….

What you’re going to do is list your concerns about moving forward on the thing that’s within you. Then, sort your concerns into groups. You can make one group for interfering beliefs and the other group for steps you need to plan.

For the items in the beliefs group, you can ask yourself questions like, “Is this ultimately true?” “Is this a rule that applies to everybody, or just me?” “Is this logical?” “Is it possible that I could be wrong about this?” “What if it works out better than I imagine?”

For the action steps group, you can simply take them one by one and ask, “What do I need to know/do in order to complete this?” “Is this one goal, or can I break it up into a few smaller goals?” “Where could I find support for this?” “Who can help me with this?” “Where could I find a tutorial online?” “What one step could I do right now to move forward on this?”

Once you have some action steps, list them in order. And then get started. Do one micro step, today. It could be to Google something. It could be to regain contact with someone you’ll need so your first convo isn’t you asking them do something. It could be envision the end result you desire and work backwards, listing the steps you took to get there. You can walk yourself back to where you are today, mentally. All forward motion is progress, big or small. Do a step, then, do another. Don’t overwhelm yourself. Just focus on the next step.

We get to be the truest version of ourselves. The version we are afraid to expose may be exactly who we’ve come here to be. Our truest self is likely the solution to a missing piece in our world.

We have the right to live more authentically… one step at a time.

Honestly, who are we not to?


Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist

Published by Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist

Marlene Dillon is the CEO of MDillon Designs & Publishing. I teach girls to believe in themselves and choose relationships that support their goals. I teach children that their dreams are possible and that they are lovable. I teach parents to communicate with their children in healthy ways. In short, I.U.S.E. people. Inspire. Uplift. Support. Empower.

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