5 Tips to Overcome the Imposter Syndrome
Ahhh, the good old imposter syndrome. Have you ever felt like you weren’t good enough to do something? Or that you weren’t good enough to call yourself something, despite fitting into that role? The imposter syndrome is that feeling that you don’t belong somewhere or that someone is better than you at something. Perhaps you don’t deserve to follow your dreams because you don’t feel worthy enough or good enough to do it? That feeling of being called out for pretending to be someone you’re not is the quintessence of the imposter syndrome.
You may not know that the imposter syndrome plagues even the most accomplished, most famous, and most talented people. It has nothing to do with your qualifications or experience. It’s a psychological phenomenon, despite not being an official diagnosis. As frightening as the imposter syndrome is, don’t worry, there are many ways to overcome it, and give yourself that confidence boost you need to follow your dreams and passions.
What is imposter syndrome?
The imposter syndrome can show up in your life in many different ways. I still have a tough time admitting that I am an entrepreneur. It’s much easier for me to talk about my career as a speech-language pathologist because it’s much more impressive to most. It’s also something that I have a good footing in and feel confident that I know what I’m doing. At least most of the time, until the imposter syndrome finds me there as well.
Have you ever struggled with talking about who you are or who you’re becoming? You’re not the only one. The imposter syndrome translates to a particular form of intellectual self-doubt. It may also translate to anxiety or even depression. A fear that someone may point out that you don’t deserve the position you hold or the role you truly earned. You are afraid that you will be called a fraud. It may, unfortunately, even stop you before you get started. It may creep into your thoughts so frequently that you give up on a dream you have to pursue your passion or create a new business. Don’t fret; it doesn’t have to end there.
5 Ways to Overcome the Imposter Syndrome
Share your feelings with a friend.
Recognizing that the imposter syndrome is plaguing you and sharing it with your close friend or colleague can be a great way to relieve some of the stress behind it. Pick someone safe, who will support you in this and encourage you. It will help you realize that your feelings are not based in reality and help you take action.
Recognize that feelings are not facts.
Feelings of doubt or shame are expected, however, they are just feelings. Realize that they are usually not based in reality. Change the negative messaging you play in your head around yourself and who you are. Meditation and mindful activities, such as journaling, can help you believe in yourself and clear some of the negativity in your mind.
Rewire your brain.
Our brains are plastic. That means that we can create new neural pathways and teach ourselves new habits that we can genuinely adapt to. Changing our negative beliefs and reprogramming our mind to be kind and loving to ourselves can be done in many ways. I have done a lot of inner work via EMDR therapy, inner child work, meditation, reading, and listening to podcasts. We are meant to grow and change and get rid of negative self-beliefs to step into who we truly are. Make sure you’re working on that because it’s an incredibly freeing and life-changing experience.
Stop comparing yourself to others.
I’ve written blog posts about this before because I’m incredibly passionate about it. You can find the link to it below. I grew up always being compared to my peers, family, and friends. I adapted the negative self-belief that I wasn’t good enough because someone else is better. It’s a terrible feeling to grow up with. Make sure you’re not comparing yourself to others because a life of comparisons leads to a life of disappointments and fear.
Any perfectionists here? Don’t be afraid to raise your hand if that’s you. I am a recovering perfectionist myself. I had to learn the hard way that actions are louder than words, and progress is much more important than perfection. Suppose I hadn’t realized that (thanks, Marie Forleo!), I would still be planning my website and dreaming about my podcast. Once you take action, it will give you confidence. You need the confidence to put yourself out there and not hide behind your imposter syndrome. The world is waiting for you and your gifts! Go out there, and rock it.
I hope that you are ready to truly show up in this world. There is someone there waiting for your message or your service. There are 7.8 billion people in this world! Many of them would love to learn from you. Don’t let the fear of being an imposter stop you. Share these feelings with a friend. Recognize that these feelings are not real. Work to rewire your brain. Don’t compare yourself to others, and please take action! I can’t wait to see what you can do if you genuinely believe in yourself. You deserve this! Give yourself a chance to shine.