Have you ever been in a conversation with a person who said something like, “Wow, you have got your stuff all together” or “You have it all figured out”? At that point, did you wonder,
“What does this person see in me?”
I have had several conversations with family, friends and colleagues these past few weeks talking about this very topic: times when we have been in conversations with others who seem to see more in us than we see in ourselves. I remember reading a passage in Liz Wiseman’s book, Multipliers, where she talks about this very topic. During strategy sessions at work, there would often come a time when a colleague would ask her to come up to the board and write out the plan. It happened so often, she asked why she always had to be the one to do this. Why couldn’t another colleague be asked to grab the marker and white board the strategy? Her colleague shared it was because Liz was naturally talented at taking really difficult and complex information and translating it in a way that all colleagues could see where the organization needed to go.
She didn’t see herself that way until it was pointed out.
Have you ever had those moments? Did you wonder, like I did, what did that person see in me? Or, even worse, did you feel like that person wasn’t seeing the real you? Maybe you felt they had been “fooled” by the appearance of success. Some have even named this “Imposter Syndrome” which is defined by Wikipedia as:
Imposter Syndrome: a concept describing high-achieving individuals who are marked by an inability to internalize their accomplishments and a persistent fear of being exposed as a “fraud”
This got me thinking – is it truly that we have “fooled” others into believing we are better than we are…or is it the other way around? Have we “fooled” ourselves into believing we are not as good as we truly are? Are we so focused on others who know more, do more, are more that we fail to recognize our own talents and accomplishments?
Please know – I am not trying to say that we should all be arrogant individuals walking around bragging about how great we are.
I am simply wondering if we are looking into a mirror and getting back a distorted reflection. Instead of seeing ourselves the way others see us, we see a lesser version. When we receive compliments, we push them off or feel unworthy. We question why someone would feel that way about us. We may lack confidence in our abilities, even when we have experience that demonstrates we would likely be successful in a task.
Why is this important?
Well, I feel this is important because if we cannot see ourselves accurately, if we lack confidence in our abilities, if we shy away from opportunities because we do not feel worthy – how can we fulfill God’s purpose for our lives?
As I have been praying for clarity of God’s purpose for my life, what I truly mean to say is how is God leading me to fulfill His purpose for my life? I know what He wants me to do…it is what He wants each one of us to do:
How can we do that if we are not confident? How can we do that if we look into the faces of others and feel like an imposter?
God calls us to have confidence – not arrogance, but confidence.
God has great plans for us. He has put us here on this Earth for His purpose. He calls us to “make disciples of all nations” and to “not throw away” our confidence. In order to do that, we need to clearly see ourselves. We need to look into the mirror and see the accurate reflection of who we are – who God has made us to be.
With that in mind, I am asking for your help. I would truly appreciate your willingness to share one word (or a few words) you would use to describe me through your eyes. I have set up an anonymous survey, so you can enter your word there. I will share the feedback in my next post. Please click on the survey link below and add the word(s) that you feel best describe how you see me.
I also ask you to give this some thought. Is there a way for you to do something similar? How can you better understand how others see you? How can you get a more accurate view of the person looking back at you in the mirror? How can you get a more accurate view of the way God sees you?
I come to You today in Thanksgiving! You continue to bless me and our family. And, while things aren’t the easiest right now, You continue to provide Your strength and Your peace through the journey. You are always faithful!
Father, I pray today You open my eyes and the eyes of all those reading this. I pray You help us to see ourselves more accurately. I pray You help us to regain our confidence, and not let it go to arrogance. I pray You provide the means in which to see ourselves the way You see each one of us. Please open our eyes, our ears and our heart to receive these messages from You – directing us on our journey to fulfill Your Great Commission.
Father, I love You, I thank You, I praise You! In Your Most Glorious Name I pray,