Not too long ago, I blogged  about impostor syndrome and about trying to manifest with an unconscious self-defeating program running in the background. You know, the one where you don’t think you are ‘the real thing’, as in ‘I’m not really a writer, or a painter’. Real writers and painters they…uh…well…they write and paint.

As if there’s a level, like a gradation on a thermometer, where you become the real thing and in the mean time you’re an impostor. A phony. A pretender. I concluded saying just having discovered it, having put a name on it, had an impact on what I was telling myself and, by extension, the universe. Imagine trying to achieve success when you can’t even give yourself credit for what you’re doing?

The syndrome returns

But I also mentioned it was a syndrome and that meant it might come back. Well it did, because that’s what syndromes do. They show up unexpectedly. In this case, last December, when I sold a painting to a collector in  the U.S.

impostor syndrome
Worlds Collide. Photo by the author.

You’d think I would have jumped for joy. But no, this was my first reaction to receiving the congratulatory email: “What’s this? Some fraud thing? Sure, I’ll click on the link and lose all my info, you miserable *%$#*@ !” So suspicious , so convinced I could never sell anything (because remember I’m not really an artist) I logged into my account and took the roundabout way to see if it was true. Yes it was. So Worlds Collide was crated up and shipped off. I agonized over the shipping: water damage, breakage, loss. I worried the collector would change their mind. Every time, I’d catch myself and switch to positives. “They’ll love it. They already liked it in the photos.” “It won’t get lost. People ship stuff all over the planet everyday.” “You won’t starve if this sale doesn’t go through, you’ll just sell another.”

10 days

My point it this: just learning about and recognizing that I have impostor syndrome (I used to capitalize, not anymore.) dwindled the negative energy. Simply saying “Ok, I have to stop doing this to myself. I have to stop hiding in fear that I’ll be seen as a fake. Because I’m not” changed the vibe I was putting out there. From the moment I first heard of impostor syndrome and started ridding myself of the negative self-talk to selling my art work took ten days. Coincidence? I think not.

So, congratulations to me. I painted it, I photographed it, I found an amazing virtual gallery, I created an account and put it online. And then I sold it.

Image: Cover image is from Unsplash, however I have lost the creator’s credits. My apologies. If anyone knows, please tell me. Updated 2023: This image is by Alexandru Zdrobau on Unsplash. Sorry it took so long.

All my art is here and here.