Imposter syndrome is a psychological phenomenon where you doubt your abilities and feel like a fraud, even when you have achieved success and recognition.
There can be a significant impact on your life, well-being and success if you’re affected by imposter syndrome, so it’s vital to uncover the underlying beliefs that keep you stuck.
How does Imposter Syndrome show up:
- Persistent self-doubt, even when receiving positive feedback or recognition
- Believing that your accomplishments are due to luck or external factors, rather than your abilities and hard work
- Feeling like a fraud or an imposter, despite being qualified and competent
- Downplaying or dismissing your achievements and accomplishments
- Fear of failure or making mistakes, which can lead to overworking and burnout
- Avoiding new challenges or opportunities to avoid being exposed as a fraud
- Comparing yourself to others and feeling inadequate or inferior
- Difficulty accepting compliments or praise, and feeling uncomfortable with attention or recognition
- Internalizing criticism or setbacks and attributing them to personal flaws or deficiencies
- High levels of anxiety, stress, and low self-esteem.
Which of these 👆 show up for you?
Here’s my 3 top tips to move beyond Imposter Syndrome:
1. Share your feelings
You build up stories that just aren’t true, and through sharing your thoughts you can start to recognise this for yourself. Find someone who will truly listen – with the aim of being there for you. This is different to someone hearing you and listening while they’re thinking about how to respond.
When you are fully heard it gives you the chance to feel valued and supported. This is the environment necessary to be fully frank and honest with your thoughts, and how you will start to move beyond your Imposter Syndrome. I wrote about being A Listening Superhero here.
Coaching provides a confidential, non-judgemental space to explore this on a deeper level. Or speak with a trusted friend. Just don’t bottle it up.
2. Assess your reality
Grab a pen and notebook and write down all the evidence to support your abilities and skills which you are doubting. Be realistic and honest with yourself.
When we doubt our abilities and skills, it can be easy to focus on our weaknesses and shortcomings. However, it is important to recognize that we all have strengths and accomplishments that we can draw on to boost our confidence and overcome self-doubt.
One powerful way to do this is by taking a few minutes to reflect on and write down all the evidence of our abilities and skills. Whether you use a pen and notebook (my preference), or using a digital note-taking app, it doesn’t matter – choose the method that works for you.
Ensure you list all your achievements, both big and small.
This process links to #1, where you tell yourself a story often enough you believe it, but actually when you dig deeper the reality is you have plenty of evidence to support you are capable.
3. Take one small step
In order to grow and achieve things (and give us the evidence we are capable) we need to stretch a little outside of our comfort zone. Breaking down the big scary task or project into smaller steps allows you to feel more in control, and makes it more manageable to make progress.
You know the saying, a journey of a 1000 miles starts with a single step – you can apply this to anything you want to accomplish. And the good news is that when you just focus on the next small step, it really doesn’t matter if you don’t do it absolutely right first time.
In fact, I want you to forget about aiming for perfection. Embrace the imperfect nature of being a human being and celebrate being perfectly imperfect.
The pursuit of perfection can be exhausting and often unattainable. It can lead to feelings of inadequacy, anxiety, and self-doubt. Instead of striving for an unattainable ideal, it is important to recognize and accept our flaws and imperfections. This does not mean that we should not try to improve ourselves or our circumstances, but rather, that we should strive for progress rather than perfection.
Remember to reward yourself for each tiny step of action you take. Create a ‘win’ jar and pop a note in each time you achieve something…when you reflect back on progress and accomplishments you’ll realise you have done far more, and got a wealth of evidence to move you beyond your Imposter.
It is our imperfections that make us unique, and our uniqueness that makes each of us beautiful.Beth Kempton, Wabi Sabi
Let me know which way Imposter Syndrome shows up for your, and your thoughts in the comments below 👇👇👇
Adopting better habits and thought patterns can help us accomplish far more than we feel is possible. Life coaching conversations can help you make those positive changes. You have the space and time to explore what keeps you stuck, unfulfilled and not living aligned to your values. If this sounds like something you’d like to look into take a look at the Services I offer or get in touch to arrange an initial free and informal chat.