I had originally planned on writing about how I have terrible follow-through, but then there was a post on a blog that I love that stopped me in my tracks. When TheBloggess opened up and posted about her feelings (http://thebloggess.com/2013/09/is-it-just-me/) I had a flood of thoughts that completely changed where I was heading. I adore this stranger. I really believe that if we ever met we’d be friends, so I was concerned when she posted about her struggle. It really reminded me of why I went into the Mental Health field to begin with. Strangers (some I like, some not so much, but each deserving of my attention and assistance) coming to me for help in navigating their challenges – not that TheBloggess came to me, she kind of came to the world, but that’s neither here nor there.
When, as a counselor, I stepped into a session with the client I knew that somewhere I had the answers tucked away in my brain. I thought I could help everyone by giving them the answers. But, every day of my internship I felt like I was a total fraud. I soon realized that it wasn’t my job to give anyone answers. It was my job to help them find their own answers that lead them to better choices. I built a rapport and listened. I offered guidance and held their hand as they walked down their path. Each and every step terrified me.
I think about my friends who are counselors (therapists and guidance). I wonder how many of them feel the same sense of fraudulence. I also think about those who seem to do it with such an air of competence. Do they really have it, or are they good at faking the funk?
For many years I taught military family members. When I stepped on the platform I had the same feeling that I was such a faker phony. I was so afraid that someone would ask a question that I couldn’t answer and it would expose my inadequacies. After the first year I realized that I am a good trainer. It’s not because I had all the answers, but because, like my counseling, I built a rapport with the students and listened. I am a kick-ass facilitator. That’s my talent, my gift. I think that’s why I think I’d be good at television. I can build rapport with people – I think I could even do it through a screen.
I guess what I’m saying is that we all have our own insecurities and we all have to realize that despite those insecurities we all also have talents and gifts that make us special.