Impostor Syndrome. The term suggests feeling inferior syndrome can often lead to projecting a self-image that is larger than what we are. In reality, we all suffer from the fear of being found out and the ‘syndrome’ itself manifests itself as much as we allow it to. Rather than catastrophize and ruminate, find a healthy way to validate what you already know ; you deserve the recognition and know a great deal!
Here are some ways you can combat and correct Impostor Syndrome:
1.) Mentor. The act of coaching others to learn or develop through your own experience and knowledge is a great way to eliminate self doubt and reinstate confidence.
2.) Write down your achievements and look at them. Think about the experience surrounding each success and how you have evolved over time. You will feel a sense of pride and accomplishment.
3.) Talk it out. You are not the only one. You are the not the first. You will not be the last to feel what is very normal to feel. Having an open, objective, discussion with someone you confide in will help ease some of the doubt. Additionally, it will reveal that 99% of the other over-achieving perfectionists are similarly challenged.
4.) You will not get it right on the first try. That doesn’t make you an idiot and it doesn’t preclude you from being a genius, either. Do not assume that the rate of success over the rate of failure defines you. An impostor only claims success. A balanced and highly capable individual will openly admit to both success and failure.
5.) Be vulnerable. You’re not an impostor but you’re not an expert, either. Don’t believe it and don’t submit to the notion that there are genuine experts in the world. An expert is someone who refuses to read another book. The actual, life long expert, is the life long learner. There will always be someone who knows more than you and someone that is going to be better than you. However, you as your own individual will always carry an enormous wealth of knowledge and experience that the world can benefit from. Believe it and never stop learning. Allow yourself to learn and be vulnerable.