Imposter syndrome and how to overcome it
You’re a fake, you’re a fraud and you’re about to get found out. Is this something you tell yourself on a regular basis despite all of the evidence and all of your achievements otherwise?
If so, then you might be one of the millions of unfortunate people who suffer from impostor syndrome. Now, impostor syndrome is caused by all of the things you’re told or things that you learn along the way about your own self worth. And that becomes tied up with achievement and then say you’re always achieving. Always achieving the problem being that when you do achieve, you completely discount it and you’re onto the next.
Now, this is like a vicious cycle. And when you’re trapped in it, it can lead to high levels of stress. And anxiety, working, overworking, working long hours and ultimately, burnout. I know i’ve been there. On top of that in amongst everything that’s happening, the problem is that impostor syndrome is exacerbated by change or challenge.
So it might be in absolute overdrive right now. So what to do about it? Well luckily there are three key techniques that I use myself and also I use with my clients.
The first one being is to create an evidence folder. So collect any positive feedback that you’ve received over the years. And actively go out and seek it but it has to be evidence based and it has to be from people you respect or credible sources.
Otherwise, that impostor voice will completely rubbish it again. Seriously. So collect that evidence and have it up on your wall, on your screensaver, in a book where you’re going to see it all of the time. And have it at hand for when that imposter voice strikes again.
Second tip is to distinguish between what actually, has you be a fake or a fraud, or whether actually, it’s just a skills gap.
So for example, if it’s a public speaking gig that you’ve been asked to do. If you’ve never done public speaking before in front of a large group, it could just be a skills gap.
So always ask yourself the inquiry question – what’s the skills gap here? And if there is one go and up skill yourself so go and get some public speaking training.
The third one is baby steps now this has been the most effective tip for both me and my clients over these past 12 years.
So again, using the public speaking analogy. If you’ve been asked to speak to a whole big group of people, at your place of work or at a group, just come back. And think about okay what’s the baby step that doesn’t feel so scary. And that might be just that you rehearse your speech to a group of your friends one evening over a glass of wine. Whatever that is. But just come back and ask yourself, what’s the baby step?
So that’s it, they’re my top three tips for helping you overcome impostor syndrome. Hope you go well with that, let me know and thanks for watching.
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