Oh dear, this is just all too familiar in my career where I was worried whether I would be laid off at the drop of a hat and I though I was “never good enough”. Though unfortunately unlike startups, my insecurity was actively re-enforced by an incredibly toxic professional culture where public character assassination was commonplace, periodic legal troubles occurred, and I was literally told that the passion for my subject of choice (meteorology) didn’t matter. That’s the thing with toxic work cultures, the way they ensnare you is that manipulate you in thinking that you are “never good enough”. Then you acquiesce to all of the ridiculous demands and fall for the inevitable gaslighting that says “oh this is just like the other companies in our space”. No, no it’s not, and no amount of “innovation” or speeches saying “we’re the best in the world/changing the world” can cover up bad behavior. I have found a much better place to be than in my past and I am way better off for it. It was said after Bernie Madoff’s shenanigans that you “shouldn’t trust someone in an Armani suit”. Well in this case I don’t trust people who ridiculously claim that they are “changing the world”, and as Leo Tolstoy said “People always think about changing the world, but never themselves”.