Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Young at Heart

I have been working at my employer for almost 11.5 years.  My business card says I'm a Senior Application Developer. The company org chart says I'm a Specialist I.  So why do I feel so young (more so 'inexperienced')?

I look in the mirror and I have wrinkles on my forehead (this I blame on my kids for constantly worrying about them), I have laugh lines around my mouth (definitely blamed on my friends), and I use wrinkle cream around my eyes EVERY night (still figuring out who to blame this on).  But when I'm at work, talking with coworkers, management, or VPs, I feel so YOUNG.  So naive  so insecure, so ready for them to point a finger at me and tell me I'm an imposture - that I'm lying to myself and everyone else around me - that I JUST graduated from college and I'm really inexperienced.  But they don't, because my wrinkles and long list of accomplishments tell them I have experience, even if my body language/posture/idiotic responses show otherwise.

I have notes from colleagues telling me about my "invaluable experience", how they couldn't have done it without me, how I am very helpful and knowledgeable, how I'm a very good leader and I have good management skills.  People come to me with questions, and I have answers or I know where to find them.  Wouldn't you think I would believe everybody by now?  Shouldn't I be strutting around with an inflated ego by now?

I don't know why I feel like this some days.  Maybe I need to carry a mirror around to remind myself that I'm older than I feel?  What I need to do is find a way to stay young at heart, but still believe in myself.  Perhaps feeling inexperienced is good, so I strive to understand more and maybe that's what others see. Maybe it's because I work in a male dominated occupation, so I don't know how women are supposed to feel/act?  That's a lot of maybes.  One thing for sure is that I feel more comfortable now in my job setting than I did when I first started this blog post.  Maybe seeing this in writing will help pep me up!  But just in case, I'll carry a mirror around.