A rather disturbing trend I’m seeing with clients lately is that of imposter syndrome. If you’re not familiar with the term, it essentially means that one feels as if they are a fake or are just skating through, and they constantly worry that they will be ‘found out.’ More formally, it is self-doubt about one’s accomplishments and worry of being exposed as a fraud.
Low or lack of self-esteem is at the root of this syndrome. When one does not feel good about themselves, they will attach this negative view to their skills, abilities, and achievements despite being proficient in them, such as an individual who is promoted to a supervisor role but doesn’t feel they should have the job or are being effective. This could lead them to hide in the background, allowing their peers to take more of a leader role, or to be hesitant when making decisions.
Imposter syndrome is a form of self-sabotage where one does not feel they deserve to have the things they want, either never going after them or, once having them, do something to mess it up (i.e. continually late for work, don’t finish projects, etc.). These negative feelings only lead to more negativity, along with stress and anxiety and a host of physical and emotional problems if left unattended.
Here are three quick tips to help you stop this cycle so you can live more authentically and successfully:
1. Be self-aware – the only way to create new habits (which is what you will be doing) is to be aware of your thoughts, feelings, actions, etc. Pay attention to your thoughts and body sensations when you start to have a negative thought about yourself or you have a physical feeling, such as a tightness in your chest of stomach, jittery, neck or back pain, and the like. This is when you want to…..
2. STOP – when you are aware of your thoughts and feelings,you can then slow them down so they don’t get out of control. Taking deep breaths is a great way to gain control over your head and body so you can now think more clearly. Deep breathing is a great brain refresher, also, which helps with focus and attention.
3. Own your ‘stuff’ – you must begin to recognize your greatness; write down daily any compliments you hear, actions people take, i.e. holding the door open for you or letting you into traffic, as people recognize you; also write down any actions you take towards others as well as any accomplishments you have during the day – no matter if big or small. This helps with self-esteem and self-belief, both of which lead to being confident in all areas of your life.
By creating new positive habits, the imposter mask will fall off and you will be able to stand fully in your authenticity and do your best work. You will feel confident in taking advantage of opportunities and be present with others. Using the above techniques daily will help you to be your own champion and stand fully in your excellence.
If you want to stop the struggle and get clarity on your business or career goals, why not get some help – contact me today to get started.