The Truth

Potential employers always seem to see me as a confident, smart woman who can deal with responsibilities. They see a woman with two degrees who is articulate and smiles and has a firm handshake, and is keen to work.

My family think I am so brave to take on any job that is offered to me even though it neither matches my training, talents, abilities or tastes. They think this is because of some moral code, that I cannot stand the idea of living on benefit.

The truth: Yeah, I have degrees and ****, but I have no real confidence. It's all bluff. I fake confidence during interviews because I am scared of not getting the job, because I am terrified of being without a job. Responsibilities and initiatives scare the **** out of me. I feel caught in the headlights and I wait for employers to find out I am useless and get rid of me.

I am not brave. I take the jobs and I go to work because I feel I have no choice. The idea of being unemployed terrifies and depresses me.
DancingFox DancingFox
31-35, F
17 Responses Dec 13, 2012

You may not have confidence, but you are strong. Strength is what gets us through the day.

We're always faking confidence. I go out side my room, put a smile on my face, straighten my back, and walk. But when I get back in the room, I crumble as easily as pie.


As long as you're not truly incompetent at work, like making everyone around you do your work for you (I've known people like this), I wouldn't worry about it.

I used to worry about feeling that way, like somehow I was absent from school the day they taught you about being a grownup. I felt like a kid faking it in a grownup world. Eventually I realized that pretty much everybody is in the same boat - all those people you envy who look like they're really and truly confident? Most of them are faking it too.

Employers know this - they know we're all trying our best to get through the day without screwing up too badly. And it's OK because they know that if they did fire you, they'd just end up hiring someone else who was also faking it.

You want to know something even scarier? All those people in power, from the president all the way down - they're mostly faking it, too. None of them really have all the answers. But unlike us, they can't admit it - too many people are depending on them to at least look like they know what they're doing.

I doesn't worry me. It's just the facts, is all.

Not that you "require" it or something, but, have you considered doing a good "personality development" course ?

JoeyPFoxx said in an earlier comment that a public speaking course, which was not related and he was not interested in, just did it because the Dad said it, still benefited him. I can somewhat relate to that. When I entered college, I attended one of those little nondescript personality development courses, which in today's cost will be half-a-dollar, run by some local trainer. I joined mainly because there was an excursion at the end, to a hill station which I had not been before. And a pretty girl (my college senior and my Mom's friend's daughter) joined. It actually benefited me and one of the good ones that helped me at that stage of my life.

I have heard good reviews about "Landmark Forum" course from friends. Look it up in your nearest city. They say it has helped them in similar situations. (I have not attended it).

If you are wary of corporate-looking courses or can't afford one, another alternative is Meditation or Yoga or some such technique that can release stress or enhance self-reassurance ?

I have been in the interviewer seat a few times, and I liked people who were honest, straightforward and admitted to the lack of Quality X or Quality Y. Who of us has all the best qualities ? I know not everyone is that, but there are interviewers who value a realisitic self-assessment by the candidate.

Also, I think, there may be a slight mismatch between your expectation and readiness. Jobs that pay well expect to fulfil a certain sense of responsibility, and unfortunately, may also not provide "job security", except in government. If you do not want responsibilities totally, it's unlikely that you may get traditional jobs of higher pay. There may still be options, in creative professions like writing, music. Or you can look for freelancing opportunities in your area of qualification and training, but that'll have its own uncertainty graph.

You might also want to consider the question : "Why do I not want to take up responsbility ?", the big why. You may not answer here or today, but you might need to reflect on it at leisure. Resolving that will lead to a lot of paths. It's the cause of your trouble and I think a common question that many face. Some of these courses can help you resolve that.

*sighs* I was venting, not asking people to "fix" me. I know it comes from a good sentiment, so thank you for taking the time to type up all this.

Oh. Sorry then.

Don't be sorry. You meant to help, so I'm grateful :)

Oh ok.

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I am a employer and it is real hard to find that one or two people to do what is asked. I run a small rental company and I also have a Diabete/lowcarb barkery that is the hardest to find people who want to learn more about the food we all eat. But you seem strong in your quest to stay employed you'll find that one employer who will treat you with respect. Good luck

I believe you to be smart and confident. I really beleive your nervous or have small anxiety but posting here clearly shows you are brave.Showing courage=brave. Seeking help or advice is very BRAVE!! Smart but still brave. I am not a doctor but i clearly say after examing this: It's time: To be yourself. Quit trying so hard just relax and be yourself. I love you for you now you try :)! (Alien so no flirting ) lol

I think a lot of people feel the way you do. I agree I don't always love my job, but I have a child so I do my job because I want to be the one to provide for my child. Keep going on and doing your best. Things will get better.

Fake it until you make it Better yet, fake it until you become it.

being brave is doing stuff in spite of being afraid.

I always say that! =)

How many of us work in the field of our primary training? Not many, I think. What I have found out is that if you are smart, and with two degrees I bet you are, the ability to think through things and reach applications or solutions is your greatest asset. I progressed by finding technical deficits in the companies I worked for, then trained myself for the position I defined. That, and creating influence by sharing knowledge.

And, acting confident in uncertain situations (as long as you do not act like you have skills that you do not have) is a skill honed with practice. You are not a fake. And, yes, responsibilities and initiatives are scary. What you need to do, to make clear to your supervisor/manager when you are given responsibilities, is to be certain that you are getting the authority and resources (and time is a resource) consistent with the level of responsibility you are given.

Good Luck! You are not alone thinking the way you do. That is why I am happy to be newly retired.

I don't want to deal with responsibilities. I want to do as I am told, then come home after work, play lego, write stories and read.

Hey Kid - I don't know of jobs like that anymore except those paying minimum wage. I understand, but sometimes work is a **** sandwich and every day is a new bite. That's why they don't call "it" play.

What do you think they pay me? lmao

Damn! I see so many young people whose careers just can't get off the ground. It is not just the economy it is the underlying causes.

Destruction of Unions to represent workers (allowing employers to give less while demanding more.

The bias against labor and towards wealth by refusal to tax the unproductive wealthy.

Social issues causing people to vote against their best economic self interest.

OK, let me step off my soapbox. I know that it is especially hard with work, but if you don't get political, work politically and demand more and better from the wealthy, you are going to end up a sharecropper for them.

Hope that you will find happiness in work and life.

Good question. Nice answer by GTK. Enjoying the discussion.

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We all do what we have to do to survive. My biggest fear is getting a job by over selling myself and then not living up to what i said i could do and getting kicked to the curb later, so I tend to sabotage myself during the interview. Strength and weaknesses, it is like a constant shell game we have to play with the world.

I'm the opposite. I come across really well in interviews and unwillingly set too high expectations from my employers, and then I consistently fail to meet said expectations... *sighs*

Wish you well.


I wish I couldn't understand what you're talking about... I wish...

Have some tubby toast... it'll help.

I'm being particularly receptive tonight as recent developments at my school seem to suggest that it would be quite possible for me to replace a French teacher who's obviously on his way out... will I have the guts to take the job if they offer it to me? that's another question...

Go for it! Go go go!

not there yet and he's theoritically my friend... he's also become sadly incompetent and I need to eat...

we'll see... I want to become a teacher... at last... this is a rough school but the only real class that I teach I enjoy teaching... I missed that... I want more of that...

I can honestly say that I'd do a better job than he does... I'd be completely exhausted but I'd do a better job...

Bonne chance...

you know, in my mind, it is stuck that I'll never be a French teacher or ever get what I want from life in any matter... you learn to live with it...

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hey im 26, havent had a steady job since 2009 and im going back to school and honestly idk i can pass the class i do the work study and **** but no matter how hard u study practice when the pressures on i fold like a chair

Like Sonnet said, we're all faking it. I really have zero idea how im still working at that office.

All may be a stretch. I liked the quote though.

But that's the point, Ediez. You're still there. Most places I have worked at only kept me a few months before realising how crap I was and getting rid of me. Except my school for autistic kids... Argh, don't get me started on the "Why the feck did I leave the UK" thing again...

.Hun, its ok. Before this job i usually picked up and left myself. The office kept me probably because visiting attorneys adore me. They dont have to deal with me daily so, it works.

I'm just... not very happy with my life at the moment and not sure what to do to change it. Sorry if I'm not really fun to be around...

I've never had a job for more than 3 years. I've had a couple where I've only lasted months.....

I thought it was thanks to these sexy short skirts you wear there everyday... with a very discreet stain of Big Mac on it... so sexy... <3

FoxKid, you should really come back to the UK! they do love us, foreigners, here... and the English are never xenophobic... they don't even know what 'xenophobic' means...

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When I was in college, I took a public speaking course. My father insisted on it. I'm glad he did.

My nature is to be shy and introverted. My job requires much the opposite. Being a father sometimes mandates that I stand up for my family in a way that makes me personally uncomfortable. But, we need to learn to survive. We learn about developing a facade.

So, in my public speaking class, the professor told us about Lee Iaccoca, the former CEO of Chrysler and a very eloquent public speaker. This world renowned leader had nerves so bad before a speech that he would often throw up prior to walking out onto the stage.

Only the people who are close to us and have earned our trust get to see the real us.

Very few of us are exactly who we appear to most.

Good story.

Exactly Emm. <3


Fabulous username!... "Thoughtbubble" *giggles* I love that. :D

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So you're just like the rest of us then... We're all bluffing it sweetie. It's life. <3

Well, all the colleagues I've ever had made a damn good job at pretending, coz they all looked like they knew exactly what they were doing...

No one knows what they're doing. Ever. That's how it is... Why would anyone admit that to the colleagues though? If you wouldn't, why would you expect them to?
It's okay to be fallible Kit. &lt;3

I am a big ball of fallible...

Lets me fallible together. :)

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