Ep 7 | I, the Imposter
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October 16th, 2021

A song says it best.

But I’m going to put paws to keyboard because I want to talk especially about the feels, and this seems like a good challenge for a Friday evening.

Suspended over an abyss

Last weekend I was at one of the last remaining food truck pods in my ‘hood. While waiting for my veggie momos to finish steaming, I hopped on the phone to chat with a friend.

On that call I awkwardly tried to vocalize the experience that had come over me since officially onboarding FT to Forefront.

“I used to hear people talk about Imposter Syndrome,” I’d said, pacing. “I would extrapolate to experiences I’d had, like discomfort in a room full of people, and I would wonder if that was Imposter Syndrome? I wasn’t sure what it was or if I’d experienced it. But over the past week, I’ve begun to feel this thing… And the idea is dawning on me, that maybe this, this thing, is Imposter Syndrome.”

It felt freeing, this first attempted confession.

But it wasn’t until several days later, on another call with a colleague, that I fumbled my way through to a fuller expression (and understanding) of what I was experiencing.

I characterized what I was experiencing. The feeling was as though I were suspended over an abyss.

Prior to my transition FT into the DAO world, my day-to-day went like this. I had a clear sense of what I was doing and what I needed to do next. My work projects were mapped out. There was precedent. There were legible outcomes to aim for. Even if I didn’t know the answer to something, I knew where to go to get that clarity.

At Forefront, no one is telling me what to do. There is no precedent, no pre-sets. Even the basics are in question. There is so much that is unknown, that I don’t know what I don’t know.

Yes. Suspended over an abyss, is what I said to my colleague that day.

He gently asked, “Is this feeling due to the lack of the previous structure you had in your life, or is there something else?”

It dawned on me then. Yes, there is something else.

For me, the “imposter” part comes in because I go throughout my day, not knowing what I’m doing, improvising on the spot, feeling no ground beneath my feet - and yet!

I don’t talk about this “elephant in the room.” I don’t say a word about it. (Until now.) I hop on a call or type away in a text channel with my colleagues, and I act as though I am not suspended over an abyss. (And is everyone else feeling the same, I wondered?)

Saying all this, I reassured my colleague - as I reassure you now, dear Friend - that I am ok, more than ok.

I am leaning into the abyss.

Sad, and sweet

The feeling was unfamiliar, strange, and thus disconcerting to begin with. After a time, I found I could detach from the feeling. I wasn’t fearful.

I reminded myself that this strange feeling of vertigo was just that - an alien feeling. It could be framed as {bad} only with my active cooperation.

I chose to recall that I had yearned for so long for the truly New. For an upheaval of all I had known or complacently inherited.

I reminded myself that, as comfortable as the “old memories” were, sad and sweet, I knew they could no longer serve me.

Yes, these old memories, these old structures, were the ground beneath my feet.

But I have always wanted to fly.

Best “work meeting” of my life

Yesterday was our first official staff meeting at Forefront. 🎉 (Staff being the Genesis FT/PT contributors onboarded on October 1.)

The kick-off was unexpected, with Carlos suggesting that we “introduce ourselves.”

I think I laughed out loud at the absurdity - then I realized, Wait!

Though I had collaborated closely with everyone in the Google Meets room over the past few months, I hadn’t actually had this moment with my colleagues.

“Hi, I’m [cool pseudonym]. Nice to meet you.” “Nice to meet you.” Never happened.

I came out of my reverie to hear Carlos setting up extra context to his suggestion:

“… say a bit about what brought you into the space. What you’re looking for. What you hope to get out of this journey with Forefront… So we can help support one another.”

What I was hearing was remarkable. And it wasn’t even the words Carlos was using, but more so the inner tone. His intentionality.

I heard that I was being asked to speak, not as “Employee of Company A.”

I was being asked to share my aspirations and yearnings as a person, a whole person. This had never been relevant in any previous work setting of mine.

dm'ing a friend tonight about my second life
dm'ing a friend tonight about my second life

I loved hearing my colleagues’ stories. I immediately sensed a stronger bond had been formed among us.

After this, we looked at the riddle of the Forefront North Star.

Carlos had brought a framework for us to use, competent and thorough. But we realized we didn’t have a good enough sense of the landscape to move forward.

We had to go back to basics.

In the traditional sense, you could say we got very little “done” at the meeting. But I felt differently.

We didn’t beat ourselves up. It was okay to admit that we didn’t know. I went away from the meeting impressed with how much there was left to excavate and discover.

Overjoyed, is a better word. (I have always wanted to fly.)

Gardening in Public

The vlog below was shot late at night on October 11, 2021.

And my tummy felt as though it were keenly anticipating a drop into the infinite black.

signing off dear friends,

C

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