My first job. Someone left. Suddenly I was promoted. “Who me?” I wasn’t ready. It was either sink or swim. I killed myself doing it…but I just put it out there. I put out this air of confidence and then I’d go do tons of research. It was a stressful, weird time. I was skating on air. I had some background but I was learning on the job. I had to fake it. I thought, I can either give them the deer in headlights look – because that’s how it felt – or I could play grownup. I had to pretend I knew. I guess I was faking the confidence while I was gaining it.
I learned. I had to start standing up for myself. It’s not an internship anymore. No one is going to stand up for you. After a few years, maybe even your late twenties, you hit this mark when you realize you’re not pretending. You think, “I’m on my own now. I can do this.” I finally hit that level. I realized no one was going to tell me what to do, I just had to get it done. You will find your own way. You are ready.” – 40-something on getting promoted to a job she was under-qualified …or so she thought.