Impostor Syndrome

In England people go to pubs after work. It’s a thing. You don’t go home, you don’t think of what you’re having for dinner, or of all the chores you have to do. You go to the pub.
So, to fully fit into my new life in London, of course I went to the pub the first time I was asked to join post-docs and other phd students. Scared, and not knowing what to say to fairly stranger colleagues I timidly sipped on my beer until someone started talking to me.
I had never met this girl before, never seen her in the office, I couldn’t recall her name (which she probably told me 5 minutes earlier during introductions) but she started off with this phrase:

Don’t worry. The ‘imposter syndrome’ is a real thing.

My reaction was literally this:

The imposter what??????

And then I learnt about how I wasn’t the only one feeling out of place, as if I was awarded that phd position by mistake and was working with a bunch of people who are the greater experts in my field while I can barely remember my name before I’ve had coffee in the morning.
Four months into my phd this feeling has somewhat disappeared. Reading, writing, talking to others, networking and going to the pub has helped overcome that anxiety.
Thank you Charlene!


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