Thursday, October 12, 2017

Day 12: Affirmations to combat Impostor Syndrome

A flower does not think of competing to
the flower next to it, it just blooms.
~ Zen Shin

I recently returned from a blogging hiatus. In my introductory post, I talked about my life in transition: I'm in between teaching and retirement - motherhood and grandparent - writing as a calling or a hobby.

Transition is at times exciting and terrifying. On the one hand, I have the freedom to choose my next path. I have the time (and some finances) to follow my passions and create new adventures. I dream of living in exotic locations for months at a time. My mind is filled with new book ideas. I desire to give back to my community through volunteer work.

But what if...? Delilah asks. And I become paralyzed.

To help me gain perspective, I journaled. I researched "transition" and all its synonyms. The word-string looked something like this: transition - passage - progress - flowering - bloom. After completing the exercise, I envisioned this beautiful word picture:
Transition is a shaded pathway, lined with wildflowers, leading to a bright unknown future where we can mature and become our true selves.
To live in a place where I am free to be me sounds like paradise: free from comparison, free from expectation, free from conformity. I could be proud of who God created me to be.

Proud?! Delilah is on the attack.

See, Delilah's job is to keep me humble. She constantly warns:

  • don't be over-confident
  • don't think higher of yourself than you ought
  • there's always room for improvement

Of course, what I hear her say is:
  • don't be confident
  • maintain a low self-esteem
  • don't ever think you will be good enough

I thought humility and self-deprecation were synonymous. I thought pride was always sinful.

But pride is more than having a high opinion of one's own superiority. Pride also means showing self-respect, feeling satisfaction over something highly honorable to oneself, being highly credible.

National pride is showing honor and love of country.
Family pride is showing respect for the sacrifice of our ancestors.

Is it sinful to take pride in a job well-done? Is it wrong to be proud of becoming the person God created me to be?

Each one should test their own actions. 
Then they can take pride in themselves alone,
without comparing themselves to someone else.
Galatians 6:4 (NIV)

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