Have you ever looked in the mirror and seen a completely different person? Yes, your physicality has not changed, but something about your reflection is unrecognizable. Is it something at our core that has shifted? Is it for the better or worse? How does one react at the sight of change?
I have dealt with this dilemma for sometime now, and the plain, simple truth is I do not know. I do not know if the person I see in the mirror is changing for the better or worse, but regardless, there is a sight of change. As previously stated, my physical body has not changed, but when I look in the mirror, the person I see does not reflect me.
It is almost as if even with the smallest time lapses, you can become a totally different person. However, what if every time you look in the mirror, it was a bullet shot in the heart? It feels as if you are walking on eggshells with yourself, waiting for the day you are exposed as a fraud.
This feeling has been defined as imposter syndrome, which is exactly what it sounds like. A prime example is the hit game Among Us where the killer is among the crewmembers, and to determine who the killer is people would hold meetings to decide as a consensus who to vote out.
Personally, I have fallen into the realm of perfectionism, so if I am not the perfect person to others and to myself, I feel as if I have failed. Other factors that can enhance imposter syndrome can be environmental, cultural and much more.
According to JamaNetwork, “Unlike sexual harassment and discrimination, imposter syndrome initially feels like a problem that is internal to an individual’s psyche, a self-inflicted wound. In this way, the problem begins and ends with the affected person taking an inward look and pursuing a “fix.”
Although it can be a grueling process at times, the endgame of it all is having some knowledge and understanding of your identity. In my article “Who am I when I’m alone in an empty room,” I discussed the struggle of getting a good grip of who you are as an individual and how that is especially prominent in your 20s.
Imposter syndrome has you doubt your contribution to not only yourself but to the world as well. It has you miss opportunity after opportunity because you feel as if you have to gatekeep yourself from yourself. In reality, you are setting yourself back over a battle happening in your own mind.
I am slowly learning that you do not need to have everything figured out because there is no deadline date that has to be met. It is okay to work at your own pace without feeling pressured at the speed of others. However, at the end of the day, our worst enemies are ourselves.
The feeling of fraudulency often stems from societal pressures along with other factors, but that does not mean that when you look in the mirror, you are a fraud. In fact, if you do not recognize who you are in the mirror, it means you have changed.
Change is inevitable, which is a fact everyone, including myself, has to accept. We sometimes get comfortable with the way certain things are, but as I am experiencing more and more things, I can attest that soon, you will have to be comfortable with uncomfortable.