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#71547 - 02/03/05 02:38 AM Self-Doubt/Self Marketing
Dotsie Offline
Founder

Registered: 07/09/08
Posts: 23647
Loc: Maryland
Hello ladies. I need your professional option/advise.

Here's the situation:

I'm a young boomer, full of will and ambition. It seems as though the two would be enough to figure my own problem out, right? No. I'm stuck and getting very sad, depressed and scared as my short days go by in search of the professional me.

Many of my 40 years had been dedicated to healing from a traumatic childhood past. I never eally went full throttle with the education or experience because I was in the throes of self-destructive thought patterns; 'the depression is going to come back anyway', avoiding 'situations' that could trigger flashbacks, comfort within the confines of home knowing that no one could harm me...' Just ill.

I'm ready now though. Throughout those healing years, I worked on and off, kept in contact with the professional world of folk that I know. I have lots of experience in some fairly impressionable lines of work. The problem is that I don't have enough time in either field to say that I've honed one skill or another.

Last evening I accepted an invitation to a networking function. I had lots of self-doubt and unworthy types of feelings as I dressed to attend. I managed those feelings and attended.

Once there, the person that invited me (ceo/president) introduced me to several people that he believed I should connect with. Great, right? I couldn't have gotten a higher recommendation, other than from God himself. That made me feel so much better.

Well, during the event of networking, I was approached by many. Most of which introduced themselves by stating what company they were affiliated with or owned and then it was my turn to introduce me and what I have to offer to this experience.

My self-doubt and esteem dropped a few more notches because most of the 'concepts'or profitable financial endeavors those folk introduced, I had just a bit of experience in but nothing to call my own, nothing that I was successful at, nothing really worthy of sharing due to my lack of time spent in either of the fields.

I found myself sad and angry that I'd spent so much time healing and not much making a financial contribution to my future. As we've discussed in other forum here, PTSD, depression and other mental illnesses are real, I do know this. But what do you do after the healing is over and it's time to pay the piper.

My self-worth felt like zero even though, like I stated, I had one of the highest recommendations there as a 'visionaire' or 'great person to connect with'. I felt like I was letting this high recommendation go to waste. Of course the ceo/president that spoke so highly of me doesn't know the troubles I've seen. Niether of those gracious titles yielded me enough power to confidently state that I'm worthy of going into business with.

I met the CEO of this company at the university he attends for his second master's degree. I've never told him that I don't have even one master's degree. I think he's just assumed this because of the work I do at the university. Not to clear of why he thinks so highly of me.

I'm too old to start trying to think about getting into a field for 20+ years then retiring. This is what saddens me most. If I hadn't had to spend so much time 'healing' I would have at least working for a company under my belt. Now I'm stuck with the healed me, sort of a 'jack of all trades' and no honed skills, with a fresh degree.

Panic time!?!

[ February 02, 2005, 06:57 PM: Message edited by: Sugaree ]

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#71548 - 02/03/05 05:03 AM Re: Self-Doubt/Self Marketing
Dianne Offline
Queen of Shoes

Registered: 05/24/04
Posts: 6123
Loc: Arizona
From my own personal experience and childhood abuse, I know that we doubt ourselves too quickly and too severely.

So, you don't have a Masters or whatever...What do you do? Concentrate on that. Work toward success in that arena.

I know exactly how you feel as my family didn't believe in higher education and if I'd gone and paid my own way, they would have never encouraged me anyway. So, I don't have that.

Okay, when I decided to write my story, which became a book, those who had looked at me with speculation of being an uneducated idiot, suddenly saw me differently...except those who were suddenly jealous.

Those highly educated people asked what I did and I very casually replied, "Author." Well, they surrounded me and all told me how they always wanted to write a book and how did I do it, what is it about, how did I find a publisher, etc.

Coming from abuse, I know what it can do to you for years. So, I would suggest this to you. Take what you know you do well and work on it like your life depended on it. Make it a success (you know you can do it) and then, stand back, girl. God gave you a talent and you need to use that talent and He will open the doors. Trust me on this. I know.

Education only goes so far. My husband was in his second year at ASU when a company offered him a fantastic job with good money and he quit school. He's done much better than the people WHO WORK FOR HIM who have big degrees. It's about God given talent and determination. That's all you need. I know you can do this.

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#71549 - 02/03/05 05:04 AM Re: Self-Doubt/Self Marketing
Dianne Offline
Queen of Shoes

Registered: 05/24/04
Posts: 6123
Loc: Arizona
P.S. I became an author before I was a writer. Think God had a hand in that?

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#71550 - 02/03/05 07:32 AM Re: Self-Doubt/Self Marketing
Princess Lenora Offline
Member

Registered: 11/11/04
Posts: 3503
Loc: Colorado
Dear Sugaree, and Dianne, Sugar, I could have written your post myself when I was 40. I'm 50 now, and when I was 46 I did go back to school and I got a degree in social work. College in mid life was a totally enriching and enlightening experience. But you know what evolved? My book! For that I needed the education of life experience. It seems my purpose is not in being a social worker, but in bringing awareness to social problems, such as childhood abuse and domestic violence. Did I need a degree for that? No, but the experience of college fulfilled a need. You see, PTSD kept me from concentrating when I was younger, although at the time I did not know it was PTSD. How I doubted my ability to keep my head above water long enough to complete anything! So, I understand. I'm curious to know what you are doing for work. Evidently, you have made some contribution that impresses others. Apparently they recognize your qualities, even if you don't just yet. I too am scared of my financial future because I haven't "worked" since 1995, when my true healing began. But I know my God given "work" is within my book and the presentations surrounding it. Sometimes I am wistful about wanting a Ph.D. But I must accept what it is within my heart to do, and not be swayed by my ego head, and not compare myself to others. Dianne, I was a writer before I was an author. Teachers would tell me that I was a writer, and to write what I knew about. Start with your summer vacation, they would say. If only they knew what I knew about my summer vacation. Lo and behold, I did write about what I know. I know abuse, but I also know hope and healing, and so do you two! Love and Light, Lynn

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#71551 - 02/03/05 08:28 AM Re: Self-Doubt/Self Marketing
smilinize Offline
Member

Registered: 11/08/03
Posts: 3512
Loc: outer space
I am Cherokee and in my family, no one finished high school and I didn't even know what college was. But education somehow became an important part of my life.
I finished high school two years early and got married at 17. I worked as a nurse aide and thought it would be my life career. But when the hospital offered a scholarshp I became an R.N. I was so proud of that license and assumed nursing would be my life work.
Then I had a car accident and couldn't work as a nurse so I got another scholarship and went back to college. Before I finished I married and moved away. Then I divorced and came back to my home state. I developed cancer, but finished a degree in business adm. before allowing the surgery. While recovering, I started a business and remarried. I finished a graduate degree at 47 and was accepted to a doctoral program. I still attend classes some and may still finish it.

I sometimes wonder if I am adopted. No one else in my family went to college. I think I did it because I kept getting jobs for which I was not truly qualified and I kept thinking if I could become educated I would no longer be an imposter.

I still love education. I like the classes and learning. But I also respect those who choose not to pursue education if they are happy with that choice.
However, if not having a degree bothers you, go to the college and enroll. Talk to the financial aids person to see if there is a scholarship for you. If so apply. If not, mortgage something, get a loan, sell your car. Move into a smaller place. Do what you have to do to achieve your dream. Even if you don't know what you want to study, just go. Enroll in the basics knowing that your interests will evolve. Then just go. Go to every class. Sit there and soak up all you can. Enjoy the process. It's work, but it's an investment in yourself and in your stature. But only if you finish.
If education does not matter to you, do whatever you want without it and be proud of what you achieved. But if you value education and are going to feel, as I did, like an imposter around your peeers who have an education, do whatever you have to do to get yourself through college.

Whether you ever use the degree in a job or not, it is worthwhile. For me, it was a foot in the door of the middle class. It gave me the quiet confidence of knowing I could do it too.
Pray for wisdom and then just DO it.
smile

[ February 03, 2005, 12:44 AM: Message edited by: smilinize ]

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#71552 - 02/03/05 08:55 AM Re: Self-Doubt/Self Marketing
Dotsie Offline
Founder

Registered: 07/09/08
Posts: 23647
Loc: Maryland
Smile, I do have a degree and I believe that Lynn and Dianne have one too. That is not my problem. Mine is quite opposite of yours. I am from a family of folk that have at least a bachelor's but most a master's, two or three, Ph.D's.

My issue is quite different. You see, my familiar background is extremely education oriented, maternal and paternal. Now, what my issue is, as stated in my post, is that I was abused, had to cope/deal/heal with that for many years and now I'm 40 with minimal time on the job/experience.

I worked my way through school and paved a way for many others. 'I' am 'my' issue, right now. I'm very happy and even proud that you rose from that situation and still rose further to better yourself. I'm happy that you didn't experience that 'one' barrier that would deem you incapiable/insufficient/inadequate of fulfilling your dreams and asperations in life.

What I asked is an opionion, not a judgement, on how to jump-start a life at the ripe age of 40.

Do you have any suggestions for that?

[ February 03, 2005, 12:58 AM: Message edited by: Sugaree ]

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#71553 - 02/03/05 09:44 AM Re: Self-Doubt/Self Marketing
smilinize Offline
Member

Registered: 11/08/03
Posts: 3512
Loc: outer space
Sugaree, I was responding to your next to last paragraph about the CEO with two graduate degrees. It appeared that a graduate degree might help you feel better and I was encouraging you to go for it no matter what your age.
smile

[ February 03, 2005, 12:06 PM: Message edited by: smilinize ]

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#71554 - 02/03/05 03:55 PM Re: Self-Doubt/Self Marketing
unique Offline
Member

Registered: 12/21/04
Posts: 483
Loc: North Carolina
Sugar, from my brain through your fingers. Jack of all trades, master of none. Interested in everything but not ONE thing enough to abandon all the others. The one recurring theme I hear from all the women here is passion. Oh, my. The one thing that we don't have. It's not that we don't have it at all--just that abuse has kicked us to the curb so many times that passion was a dangerous thing for us to have. Any time we displayed it, it was stomped on, denigrated, dismissed, or taken away. We hid our passion deep inside to try to save what little we had left. When we could finally feel safe enough to use it, we (I) either couldn't find it, or realized the flame was not a flame any longer, but only smoldering coals. In this forum, the breath of boomer women put oxygen to those coals, and slowly, slowly, the embers start to glow again. I still can't decide which one thing to pick. So I plan to do it ALL! I'm going to take big, fat juicy bites out of everything I can sink my teeth into and when something tastes so good I just can't spit it out -- then I will know that I have found the one true thing I have been looking for.

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#71555 - 02/03/05 06:45 PM Re: Self-Doubt/Self Marketing
Songbird Offline
Member

Registered: 06/03/04
Posts: 2830
Loc: Massachusetts, USA
Sugaree: I'm sure others have self doubted themselves at one time or another. I have too. And I didn't finish my education.

At times when doubt plagues me, I need to remember what I am good at: And I have developed skills in different areas too, but have no expertise on any. I understand God gave each of us talents. I strive to use what he's given me to my fullest potential.

And I know that he has a purpose for my life. I just don't try to compare myself with others or their expectations. I depend on God to reach the potential he's instilled in me while using it for his glory and honor, meanwhile, inspiring others in a closer relationship with him.

I've worked outside the home on a limited basis. So my corporate world experience is also limited. But I strive each day to do the best I can with any task I'm assigned. And I've seen God at work. And each time, I got great letters of reccomendations and an offer to come back any time. I praise the Lord for that!

I'm sure you'll find something you are good at and continue to develop those skills, until you have something you can call "your own contribution". Don't get discouraged. Never give up!

[ February 03, 2005, 10:55 AM: Message edited by: Songbird ]

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#71556 - 02/03/05 07:29 PM Re: Self-Doubt/Self Marketing
jawjaw Offline
Da Queen

Registered: 07/02/03
Posts: 12025
Loc: Alabama
Sug...some of the most celebrated (EDUCATION-WISE) people I know couldn't get in out of the rain if their life depended on it. Having a piece of paper doesn't make you better or more worthy of success than anyone else.

You have TONS of talent, TONS of heart, and unless you let that one little thing get in your way, you'll also have TONS of motivation to go get what you want. Now...go for it. You, along with everyone else in this world deserve the gifts God has layed out there for us. There yours too hon...go claim them.

Hugs, JJ

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