Am I in trouble?
No. Of course I’m not. I’m never in trouble.
And yet. I constantly feel like I’ve done something wrong and I’m about to get caught out.
When I’m in the office (I’m back in house doing a temporary contract), if I take an extra 10 minutes for lunch, I actively think about how I’m going to react when someone says something or when I get called aside to get told off. When I’m at home and take a 10 minute break to do some yoga in the morning, I can’t fully relax because I’m wondering “what if something comes in in these 10 minutes and I’m not there to immediately see it on email?”.
This has literally never actually happened. I have never been told off. Almost in every scenario, people can wait 10 mi6nutes. So, I loved reading this article from Dolly Alderton, and this newsletter from Anna Codrea-Rado which reminded me about it.
Where does this feeling come from!? I have never really been in trouble in my life. There was the time my friends and I got ‘busted’ by the police for drinking in a children’s playground very late at night (which I never told my parents about so – er – that happened, M&D. I gave them my beer and they let me (all of us!) go). I failed an exam in my first year of university. I failed my driving test twice. Do those last two even really count as being in trouble? Certainly no one apart from myself gave me a hard time about them.
I can count these incidents on one hand, and I remember all of them and the reasons behind them. I am definitively not a trouble-maker.
All of this is to say that I’m finding the freelance life a bit stressful at times, because if I take it easy one day, I feel like someone’s going to catch me out and… what? Tell me off for not being chained to my desk from 9-5? Why did I do this if I want to work office hours every day of the week?
I’m currently really busy, which is wonderful, but the feeling is plaguing me even more as a result. I’m getting all of my work done and despite suffering from Imposter Syndrome, I’ve had really positive feedback on my work. I’m booked until the end of October. This is not a problem. I am not in trouble.
I think I might need a post-it note as Dolly suggests. Anyone else need a reminder from time to time?