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And how you get duped into doing things, you may not be ready for
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This post is kind of a rant. I like occasionally ranting to give my perturbed righteous side some breathing room. These types of "personal thoughts" would only be available to paid subscribers in the future when I put some of the Life Intelligence content behind a paywall. Of course, I always welcome readers to share their personal thoughts on the issue I happened to be ranting about. Perhaps, those who rant together stick together???
I am going totally contrary of what the internet "knowledge entrepreneurs" and various coaches and program peddlers have been telling hoards of people for a few years now. The story goes something like this.
"Yes, you can do this, too. No, you don't have to be an expert. Yes, you can be just like me and get thousands of people paying you money for your stuff (courses, self-published books, trainings, classes, webinars, etc.). No, you don't really need much more than being yourself. Yes, you do need to buy my thing (book, course, training, coaching) to find out how."
Naturally, folks buying into these opportunities, reading the books, and going through the trainings feel uneasy about plastering themselves all over the Internet or their local communities professing their ability to deliver what they promise. They want to know, "Am I an imposter?"
"No, you are not," they are told by those who sold them on the idea, "You are experiencing imposter syndrome. If you want to get over it, buy the next level of my training…." Or something like this.
The "Imposter syndrome" supposedly is just a newbie discomfort, unnecessarily self-critical, and insecure. You will hear or have already heard that you don't have to prove yourself to generate the business you want. Show up with confidence. Get going, don't delay.
I've been listening to this BS for far too long to stay silent. For starters, I would like my doctor to be competent, not just confident. I would pay a lawyer for their knowledge and expertise, not because they look good in suits. I would board a plane with an actual pilot. I even want the housecleaner and the dogsitter to have enough skills for me to entrust the house and the dog to them.
Why do you think we have licensing processes, bar exams, and annual mandatory continuing education requirements for various professions? Because society was done with snake oil salesmen a long time ago and is trying to minimize the imposters out there for the good of everyone else.
More and more people trying to become independent financially or simply pursuing a hobby of some sort fall prey to "experts" online who, in real life, are only experts in marketing themselves. They get sold on anything from writing self-published books to coaching and exercise programs, with the promise that they can go out there and make more than just a living ASAP. I've known a few folks who've spent thousands of dollars on trainings hoping to get themselves going in the" knowledge economy," or become personal trainers, exercise gurus, life coaches, or whatnot…
It's sad to watch. So, I am done watching. If they had put their money into actually learning their craft, developing their skillset, truly increasing their knowledge and expertise, gaining the real experience, and putting in the time and sweat required to become an expert, several years down the road, they would find themselves not feeling like an imposter but having the clients, finishing the book, getting the calls and engagements.
Most people reach an expert level after decades of working in a field until they learn the ins and outs of it better than the back of their hand. Here on Substack, the most successful authors came with their readers after years as journalists, or after they've been published in book form by reputable publishers, or by being known in their fields for years.
The secret sauce of being a successful entrepreneur is knowing your shit better than most. Yes, gumption, too. Putting in the time, having the patience, and making the right decisions do wonders for one's career. Imagine that!
In the process, your confidence grows because your competence does. And your imposter syndrome magically disappears. In other words, the cure for imposter syndrome is competence!
Perhaps, I can say that if you feel like an imposter, you may actually be one. If you feel you have to prove yourself to gain someone's trust and confidence in what you offer, that's exactly right. You should prove yourself. Why should anyone trust you about anything?
If you want people's money, you must prove you're worth the investment.
No one owes you anything, least of all giving you business.
Get over it.
PS. The actual imposter syndrome has little to do with how this phrase is used in this "modern" context.
Thanks for reading.
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