We set lofty goals because we know we’re fully capable of achieving them. And when we get there, we have the option to relish in our success or question the very fabric of our ability to persevere. The second-guessing of your core beliefs about yourself and your abilities can be summarized through the concept of imposter syndrome.
What is imposter syndrome
Imposter syndrome is something many people experience internally. The belief that they are not as confident, competent, or able as others portray them to be. Imposter syndrome can include feeling like a fraud or phony.
This includes worrying about how you’re perceived in a given community, be it at work, school, or in your own friend circle. Accepting your success doesn’t happen overnight, and plenty of people with imposter feelings silently suffer. The scariest part of imposter syndrome for many is other people finding out that they are experiencing it.
Signs of imposter syndrome
Signs of imposter syndrome may be difficult to pinpoint. While you are experiencing the motivation to succeed, you may simultaneously be experiencing anxiety, over-preparing, and working yourself to the bone in an attempt to field others' perceptions of you and make sure they see you working hard.
Causes of imposter syndrome
Like many areas of our psyche, imposter syndrome can be caused by a myriad of things. It could be the way you experienced your role in the family unit growing up. If your parents had a more authoritative approach and style, you may be prone to experiencing imposter syndrome. Especially if your family unit values achievement. Perhaps you’ve started a new job and the pressure to go above and beyond as you learn the ropes.
Feeling pressured to achieve can lead to burnout
We know that one of the tricky parts of imposter syndrome is the volume and speed you take on passively in the process, whether or not you notice it. This is a perfect recipe for burnout. Whether you’re in grad school or a blossoming CEO, there’s only so much gas in the tank before it needs to be refilled. Many folks who experience imposter syndrome struggle with knowing when enough is enough.
Combating imposter syndrome
Imposter syndrome is dynamic in the way that it impacts people's lives. In fact, at first, you may feel a burst of positive energy. Especially if you’re working hard, accomplishing your goals, and moving to the next stage of a project.
Recognize your achievements and expertise
Learning to love your own reflection is an integral piece of the puzzle. Recognizing your achievements and trusting your expertise comes from an organic and honest place, and these are just a few of the things to consider when you start doubting yourself.
Focus on what you do well
The darker parts of imposter syndrome lie in the depths of what we consider to be flawed. Instead of looking at them through the light of failure, engage them as an area for growth and focus on what you do well. If you take the time to be intentional with your acknowledgment, you might notice a shift, like a small plant, so it can continue to grow if you remember to water it.
Positively reinforce those behaviors
One of the most classic ways to support yourself in the middle of the imposter syndrome phenomenon is to positively reinforce when you have a constructive thought or idea about yourself. Using “I” statements to identify moments of joy and accomplishment, even if it is small and short-lived, helps build a strong foundation.
A foundation from which you can grow the necessary skill set to recognize the signs of imposter syndrome coming on. Dedicating time to understanding this shift will give you an immediate return on your investment; the chance to fully understand what it is you’re working with, and fine-tune preventative strategies to stay grounded.
Coping with imposter syndrome
Coping with the pseudo-imposter in you is a challenge when you’re going it alone. Having the support of a life coach means you have the opportunity of a lifetime. Engaging with a well-being catalyst can bear fruit you can carry with you for years to come.
Connect with Design Clarity CC
If you’re ready to make incremental changes and learn a little more about your own needs, connect with me through my website. I can’t wait to help you begin your journey toward self-confidence and the success you deserve to acknowledge.