Imposter Syndrome

Have you heard of Impostor Syndrome?

Whether you have or not, chances are you’ve felt it. It is technically defined as “a psychological pattern in which an individual doubts their accomplishments and has a persistent internalized fear of being exposed as a ‘fraud’”. In short, it’s the feeling you get when, no matter how experienced you are at a task, you think someone is going to call you out for not knowing anything.

There are a lot of helpful articles about the kinds of Imposter Syndrome and steps to overcome it but reading them may not help in the moment. Not letting the feeling take control of you may be the best short-term, in the moment plan. A tip to achieve this is to recognize the feeling as Imposter Syndrome and aim for rational thought, which can sometimes be harder than you think to achieve.

When Imposter Syndrome strikes stop thinking about why you are a failure (you’re not!) and think about what you have achieved and the good things you’ve heard about yourself and it that doesn’t work, sit down and do your work (school, side hustle, job search, hobby whatever). Nothing stems off the fraud inside your brain like honest to goodness work. You get that “got a lot of good work done today” feeling and you have something tangible as evidence that you are in fact great at what you do and anyone who thinks otherwise is wrong. Remember, that even if someone does think you’re lacking in a skill they are probably more focused on their Imposter Syndrome than thinking about what you can and cannot do.

Regardless of how you feel about your qualifications on a day to day basis, the fact that you are out there trying to improve yourself and reach your goals counts for something. Keep going, you got this!

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