I'm late to this, but I very much appreciated this reflection, from Brendan Busse, S.J., at The Jesuit Post, on his efforts to work through academic anxiety, which so often–doesn't it?–spills into larger worries and doubts. He writes:
I couldn’t overcome the sense that what felt like a very poor performance meant that I was a total fraud, that I’d never pass as a priest, and that I was a fool to think it possible in the first place. Maybe I don’t know what I need to know. Maybe I don’t believe what I need to believe. Maybe that whole ‘falling in love’ thing was just a cruel joke. Maybe this wasn’t meant to be. Many good relationships end this way, with a sense of betrayal or inadequacy, with a bullying one-two punch to the gut: Who do you think you are? You should have known better.Anxious self-doubt manipulates the truth with needless worry and endless projection. The antidote to this anxiety is to stop narrating what should be and to express gratitude for what is, to give attention to the present and the real.
With the new academic year only a few weeks away, I am thankful for these honest words and encourage you to read the rest of Brendan's moving essay.