Are you fighting self-doubt? Do you fear you won’t be able to maintain your current level of success? Do you doubt your competency or think you aren’t worthy of your accomplishments? Are you certain everyone around you will someday realize you are a fraud? You are not alone! You could be dealing with imposter syndrome. Studies show that up to 70% of people experience some form of these feelings.
SO, what is imposter syndrome?
Imposter syndrome is very real! It’s the internal struggle of believing you are not as competent or capable as your accomplishments and evidence indicate you to be. Despite your success and abilities, you are convinced you are inadequate and any success you have experienced is due to pure luck. I am here to tell you-your success is not luck!
The dangerous thing about imposter syndrome is that it feeds on your deepest fears about yourself and transforms them into a truth you begin to believe! Obviously, the negative impact of this psychological trap will affect your career, your relationships, and virtually every part of your life.
Nobody wants to live like this! So, what are you going to do about it?
Overcome it & Use it to Your Advantage
Celebrate your accomplishments! Own it! You earned it, and you need to rebuild your perception of yourself. Schedule a time every week or month to meet with someone who encourages you. Take the time to list the tasks you succeeded at this week or this month. Invite them to do the same. Celebrate each other!
Find an area you feel inadequate and choose to be better at it. I had a friend in college who shared about the stutter he experienced as a child. It was debilitating for him! So, he asked himself, how can I figure out a way to overcome this. Guess what he did? He joined the debate team! And he worked hard to become a better communicator. It took time and discipline, but he did it. Later earned his doctorate in communication!
Don’t compare! There will always be someone better than you at something. Learn to be content with who you are. Recognize your own strengths instead of being intimidated by other people’s accomplishments. For you, this might mean getting off social media. Why compare yourself to someone else’s highlight reel? Often, social media is about perception and things are not always as they seem. Instead of comparing, embrace your own worth!
Start helping others. Think about ways you can encourage those around you. If 70% of people feel like they are walking around as fraud, there are opportunities everywhere! Offer a compliment. Tell a co-worker you appreciate their problem-solving skills. Thinking of others more keeps us from dwelling on our own insecurities.
Embrace your mistakes! They don’t define you. They are learning opportunities. Allow yourself the chance to grow! When constructive criticism comes your way, receive it. In fact, seek it out!
You aren’t perfect! There is always a way to improve. Tell yourself now that you have much to learn and then allow yourself to learn it. That doesn’t mean you are a failure. It means you are choosing a healthy road to success. And be proud of that success!