Is your life affected by feeling like a fraud? Do you ever worry that you’ll be exposed when someone gives you praise? Do you think your achievements are down to luck? If so, you are probably experiencing Imposter Syndrome.
Imposter Syndrome was first mentioned in the 1970s by psychologists studying successful women, now we know that men are also affected.
Around 70% of adults have experienced Imposter Syndrome at some point in their life. However, you might be especially vulnerable when trying something new or celebrating something like a job promotion.
Imposter Syndrome could be down to nature or nurture. Whatever the reason, you can stop undermining yourself by accepting doubts without letting them interfere with the happiness and success you deserve.
Change Your Thoughts:
- Remember your achievements. Keep track of what has gone well for the times you realise you are focusing on things that didn’t turn out the way you hoped
- Change your self-talk and find a way to reframe any negative self-talk so that you start to see yourself more positively.
- Accept uncertainty. Imposter syndrome is often linked to perfectionism. Start to love and accept your strengths and weaknesses.
- Forget about others. Decide fo live up to your standards rather than waiting for approval from anyone else.
- No failure, only feedback. Do you regard mistakes as a problem? Most people do, but in reality, failures are something that you can learn from.
Change Your Behavior:
- Talk it over. Imposter syndrome can be a challenging behaviour to change because your first impulse is to cover it up. But revealing your insecurities will help you to put them in perspective.
- Ask family and friends for help. Being vulnerable takes courage, but it will boost your confidence and strengthen relationships.
- Fight stereotypes. Feeling like an outsider can contribute to imposter syndrome. For example, if you’re much older or younger than your colleagues think about how diversity is an advantage instead of worrying about being different.
- Be spontaneous. Stop putting unnecessary pressure on yourself if you frequently over-prepare for various events. You could throw a party with takeaway pizza instead of spending all day in the kitchen.
- Accept compliments. Practice saying thank you.
- Find a coach or mentor. Working with a mentor gives the benefit of accountability and feedback from someone you trust.
- Teach others. If you want to learn how to do something, then teach others.
- Stay relaxed. It is easier to be authentic if you manage stress. Find time for meditation and exercise. When you start to question your worth slow down and take a deep breath.
- Take risks. Impostor syndrome can hold you back from trying new things. Make a list of projects that excite you and take pleasure in learning as you go along.
You can overcome Imposter Syndrome and in turn, build your confidence and sense of belonging. Keep it simple, start with one of these ideas. Let me know which one resonates most in the comments