I seldom feel confident as a partner, friend, mentor, or coworker.
In my marriage, I rarely believe I am as intelligent overall as my wife. I know I am not as emotionally balanced as she is. I know I lack her ability to deal with people. I know all the ways in which I fall short of her. I rarely feel that my talents complement hers.
This insecurity means I constantly worry that I have failed her. She could have found a better companion, someone with whom she would enjoy life and enjoy more success. That's a challenge for a relationship, since I'm always fighting the sense that she would be better off without me.
I think to myself, if only I were more successful, more popular, more charming, and more fun, her life would be better. Instead, she's stuck with me holding her back financially and socially.
Similar thoughts impede my friendships, my teaching, and my career. Doubts take over, consuming me at …