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The advice "fake it til you make it," though often said with at least a hint of sarcasm, does carry quite a bit of wisdom.


By simply putting one foot in front of the other, weathering the chaos of not knowing what's happening as you learn as fast as possible, we can find ourselves further than we expected.

Once we're there, reaping the fruits of all our "faking," we somehow begin to take on a new identity in people's eyes They assume we've always been in control and known what was going on. They defer to us for advice.

But that couldn't be further from the truth. So we keep on faking it.

Redditor espectro11 asked:

"What's your 'I don't know, I didn't think I'd get this far' moment?"

Many Redditors discussed their experiences navigating the intimidating environment of job applications, interviews, and offers.

Oh Right, Getting Paid

"I gave my resume to fancy private school (I'm a teacher, but new to the field) and I didn't expect a call back. But they called me today to ask my expected salary and I said 'I don't know what the average is. Let me Google it.' "

"Ya girl was not prepared."

-- little-red-bird

Uhhhh, Uhhhhh

"When I went for a walk-in interview looking like crap and they hired me on the spot. I get they were hiring for a new store, but they up and said 'if you want the job it's yours, when can you start?' "

"Deada** didn't think I'd make it that far."

-- NewtNeutral

Outside the Box

"Years ago I was applying to a bunch of copywriting jobs and feeling frustrated because I wasnt hearing back from any of the places I was applying to."

"It was especially frustrating because I was putting in all this time on cover letters and I felt like nobody was even reading them, so I said, 'Fu** it, I'm gonna write one that is more me.' I thought it was a dumb idea and never imagined that it would work, but somehow it did."

"I applied with this cover letter and the subject line "Copywriter: Will Work for Beer" to a job that I was very underqualified for. It managed to catch the eye of the headhunter for the ad agency and was enough to get me an interview. Shortly after that I was hired and ended up working there for a few years, but I remember thinking on my first day, 'I can't believe that actually worked.' "

-- -eDgAR-

Just Not the Right Fit

"An interview at Google. The 20 years younger than me was describing the peer review system."

"I responded with 'Jesus, that sounds awful.' "

"I did not get the job."

-- thereallysososantini

Others also shared experiences that centered on their working lives. But these stories weren't about being hired or interviewed.

These were accounts of long-developing success stories that they never would have predicted.

A Winding Road

"My entire legal career"

"I have four degrees and a 10 year career in commerical litigation. I just wrapped up a $200mil trusts lawsuit."

"I started at uni doing theatre and stand up comedy. I have no fu**ing idea where I turned to get here."

-- lawyerlady

Big Fish

"Started at a very small company doing sales straight out of college. I went about messaging big corporate players (who obviously would never do business with us since our size) and was laughed at by my new colleagues for even trying."

"2 weeks later My boss was asking me what we (a team of 6) should say on the conference call with Toshiba Buyers."

-- TheBFG420

Putting Fires Out

"Me at work. I feel like every issue that comes up has me unprepared. But I am always praised for my good work."

"So, I assume I have imposter syndrome and keep doing what I am doing."

-- 47-Rambaldi

So next time you find yourself ruling a possibility out completely, maybe take just a few seconds to imagine it actually occurred and prepare.

You just never know.

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