Imposter syndrome affects people of all industries, but, given the nature of the tech industry, it seems to affect an inordinate number of developers. In this talk, Hiro Nishimura will share how saying “yes” to opportunities, even when she didn’t feel fully prepared, helps her overcome the fear associated with imposter syndrome.
The Power of YES Against Imposter Syndrome
As a Special Education teacher turned Helpdesk Engineer turned SysAdmin, a lot of my career has hinged on me learning on the job, and saying “Yes” to opportunities, despite feeling 150% unprepared. When I created awsnewbies.com in Summer 2018, I barely understood what “Cloud Computing” was. To study for my AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam, I created a blog based on my study notes. Few months later, I was working on my first course for the “Introduction to AWS for Non-Engineers” series with LinkedIn Learning.
In Summer 2019, I quit my job as a sysadmin at a tech startup in NYC to work as a freelance Technical Writer and Technical Instructor. I focus on creating jargon-free documentations and resources to help break down technical concepts for people with non-traditional tech backgrounds. That fall, I was invited to attend AWS re:Invent on an “AWS Community Leaders Grant,” and was also one of 3 subjects selected to be filmed throughout the conference for AWS’s “Day in the Life” project.
Though my whole career in tech was filled with imposter syndrome as someone with a non-technical background, I’ve come to embrace the “unknown” as something I don’t know…. Yet. Every day, I’m learning something new, and being able to accept that I don’t know something… yet! has been one of the core principles that has taken me from a Junior Helpdesk Engineer in 2015 to someone who can mold her own “dream career” in 2019.