Fighting the imposter syndrome

Like many of my friends and colleagues, I am absolutely, without any doubt, a victim of the imposter syndrome: In academic contexts, I spend a lot of time worrying that I do not belong there, and lots of time trying to stop worrying.

I am therefore extremely happy that I found a way to train myself in acting-as-if-I-belong, and that way is being the only female – and moreover a small, physically relatively weak and wobbly one – in the fitness room of a boxing club.

At first it felt really horrible to always have to wait for the machine I needed to become available and then to change the weights from something like 40kg to 9 or even sometimes 4.5kg. The nice surprise though was that nobody cared. Every single one of those super-muscular weight-lifting guys was polite and didn’t care at all about me being there. Not a bad feeling at all. I might even belong there.

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