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Kim Philby was a well-educated Englishman who studied at the most elite British schools. While studying as a college student, he became fascinated by communism. Then in the mid-1930s, Philby was recruited to become a spy for the Soviets. The KGB convinced Philby to join M16, the British intelligence agency, serving as a double agent during WWII. In 1944, Philby became the head of M16’s anti-Soviet intelligence agency, all the while passing top secrets along to the KGB. Eventually, he served in Washington D.C. as the M16 station chief and the main liaison between the British and American intelligence agencies. Philby was suspected several times of being a double agent but charmed his way out of exposure.

We too feel like double agents at times. Impostors. And with this comes anxiety, doubt, insecurity, lack of confidence, unhealthy compensation, and a plethora of other unhealthy responses. I am convinced there is not ONE person who has never battled the impostor syndrome regardless of position or outward shine. How can I be a strong leader when I have no idea what I’m doing? How can I be in this position of leadership when I actually belong two rungs below on the organizational ladder?

Impostor syndrome is not an excuse or a sickness – it’s something to overcome. It’s not something to accept or embrace. It’s something to battle. Fear, self-doubt, insecurities, and lies that we buy into become a harness that keep us from running wild. And of course, there is fear when you’re running wild because the wild can be a scary place at times. However, I believe wholeheartedly you are meant to run wild. Embrace your true self and run wild.

You are who you are. You are here for a reason. You have gifts and talents. Perhaps your strengths have been overlooked far too long. Your ordinary is extraordinary when you are living out your gifts and talents. When you are living out your true self, you are powerful and can conquer mighty things. There is no other YOU.

Your true self is not an impostor. Your true self includes your gifts, your talents, your experiences, your story. Share your treasures with others and leave this world sparkling with your extraordinary.