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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Imposter syndrome gets to us all at some point. For me, it was at its peak at the beginning of the semester. When school started it felt like everyone was talking about how well they did in high school. I was hearing things like “I had a 4.0,” “I was president of 5 clubs,” or “I was valedictorian.” But what about those of us who were just average? 

During those conversations, I would revert back into my shell, hiding from the fact that I felt insecure. My brain was telling me that everyone here was smarter than me and that I’d never make it here. A part of me always knew those thoughts were dumb. I mean, I got into this school, too. Admissions wouldn’t let someone in that they didn’t think should be at their school. 

But, then my brain brought up the idea that my sob story college essay got me into school, not my GPA or my extracurricular activities. I went back and forth while writing that essay on whether or not I should play the “deaf girl” card. Eventually, I decided that it would probably be more likely to help me than hurt me, but I was still scared admissions counselors would read it and decide they didn’t need a liability on campus. 

At some point in the middle of the semester, something in my brain switched. I was talking to a groupmate for a class project when she said “wait, what year are you” to which I replied that I’m a freshman. She seemed so surprised. On my walk back to my dorm after that class, I was grinning from ear to ear. 

Not only did I suddenly feel like I fit in, but it seemed like I had my life together enough to be an upperclassman! That class had been particularly nerve-racking since I was one of the few freshmen in the class. 

The only reason I think people perceive me as having my life together is that I firmly believe in the “fake it till you make it” method. I try to talk like I’m sure of what I’m saying, and I make it look like I’m not sleep-deprived and eating enough. Nobody can tell the difference between really having it together and faking it, but eventually, if you fake it enough, you’ll actually get it together and you won’t need to fake it anymore.

Maybe that’s the best way to convince ourselves we belong and beat imposter syndrome, Pretend we belong until we do.

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Nina is a freshman at Boston University studying Journalism and Computer Science. You can find her having dance parties in her dorm, scouring the city for the best cafe, and making random Pinterest boards.
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