On Being Awkward And Faking It

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You guys, I have a confession. I know I may look poised, polished, and professional on the outside—but most of the time I feel awkward, anxious, and amateur.

Why am I telling you this? Well, it started with a conversation with a friend (as most of my blog posts do). She was telling me about her new job, and the big responsibilities she has.

She’s been giving these big presentations to these big executives, and it’s all so big, big, big. And basically, she feels like she’s just awkward and faking it. She feels small.

So I told her this: Honey, we are ALL awkward and faking it!

I mean, I do definitely have my moments of feeling like I’ve really got this professional, mommy, wife, writer, teacher, grownup thing down—but then about 10 minutes later, I’m not so sure.

So much of the time, I’m just winging it—hoping it works out for the best. “Winging it” pretty much sums up my parenting style. And in my career? I recently raised my rates 25% because I am “faking it” that I’m a big-time writer and worth more!

I look like it on paper, right? I have impressive clients like Google, and they seem really happy with my work. But at what point will I feel like I’ve totally nailed it and have no room left for improvement? Probably not in this lifetime.

As much as I strive to feel competent and graceful, I think that whenever we push ourselves to grow, learn, and enter new territories in life, it’s only natural that we feel like we’re “faking it.” That’s not being small—that’s living BIG.

And awkward? I feel awkward much of the time, even with close loved ones! But when I really started watching others around me, I realized that everyone feels awkward a lot of the time.

Have a look around and you’ll see what I mean. She strokes her hair unconsciously to make sure it’s in the right place. He shuffles his feet and puts his hands in pockets. Even the cool kids are awkward and faking it.

I heard one of my favorite authors, Glennon Doyle Melton, mention being awkward in an interview once. She said she’d rather be awkward than cool. “Awkward is warm, cool is cold,” she said. Love her.

Today my mantra is: Release, release, release. Release the idea that I need to be something other than awkward and faking it. We are all figuring it out as we go along. We’re still growing up, no matter how old we are.

We’re figuring out how to be mothers, workers, friends, wives, daughters, sisters, change makers, and more in a world that feels out of control at times. I am proud and in awe of us.

If we had it all figured out already, we wouldn’t need to be here anymore.