Do You Suffer With Imposter Syndrome?
Have you ever felt like an imposter? Scared that at any moment, someone is going to catch you out and see the real you?
Working in personal development, I soon realised this issue haunts so many people especially women. Or is it because they are more open about it? Even those who are rich and famous, and on the outside, appear to be in complete control, have been reported as saying they feel like frauds.
‘You think, why would anyone want to see me again in a movie? And I don’t know how to act anyway, so why am I doing this?”’ Meryl Streep
“Some days I wake up in the morning before going off to a shoot, and think, I can’t do this. I’m a fraud.” Kate Winslet
So, if you find yourself:
- Comparing yourself to others
- Being fearful of being exposed or found out
- Not feeling worthy
- Feeling like an imposter or a fraud?
- Feeling that you are not good enough, or don’t know enough?
- Being a perfectionist and not finishing anything
You’re not alone! So many amazing practitioners and therapists fall into the trap of feeling like an imposter and constantly question themselves.
This could be hidden in the need to be continually learning. The thought that ‘if I can work out how to do this, or learn that, I will be ready!’ You learn it and then something else comes along that you think you need, and so the pattern continues.
It’s time to stop and recognise that you are good enough! There will always be more you can learn, but at some point, you need to allow yourself to own your unique talents, and flourish.
You have the tools you need to provide an amazing service to your clients. If you are hiding away, you are doing them a disservice.
It’s time to work on your fears, stop trying to be perfect, allow yourself to make a few mistakes, and just go for it!
I’ve had to fight the imposter demon quite a few times, to the point I kept myself hidden for years. I was always the person in the background, making sure everything worked, I was good at that. I was never the one at the front and on show.
Starting my own business, where I had to step out of the shadows, has been a huge challenge at times. Playing small was a genius way of sabotaging myself and a quick way to feel like an imposter if I was to make a stand.
Once I realised what I was doing, I gave myself permission not to be perfect, and things changed. I realised that it didn’t matter if not everyone ‘got me’ or liked me. I took the pressure off myself to be someone I wasn’t. I accepted and owned my own strengths and skills, and started to take my place in the world.
I’m not saying I don’t still have the occasional wobble, but at least I know what I am dealing with now.
Stopping the Imposter Syndrome
Know that you can step in and deal with feeling like an imposter when it occurs. I don’t think we ever completely free ourselves of it, as long as we continue to grow. Feeling like an imposter tends to show up as soon as you move to the next level, or onto your next challenge. It is a good indication that you are working on something that is important to you.
Start by recognising, it is just fear talking
Write down what it is you feel an imposter about and what you are saying to yourself: not good enough, got missing skills, don’t want to be visible, fear of failure, fear of success etc. This will help stop it from whirling around your head. Seeing it in black and white, allows you to get some perspective over what you are thinking.
Talk it through
Find a trusted friend and talk thorough how you are feeling. Just saying the words out loud to someone will help you get clarity over what’s going on. Your friend can also provide you with feedback and reassurance that you’re ok, and that you’re not alone.
Make a decision
Decide what you want to feel instead and what you want to achieve. Write it down using positive, descriptive, language. This will provide you with the direction to move towards. Now make a commitment to yourself and put your note somewhere visible.
Recognise what you have achieved so far, and all the work that you put in to do it. This will help you reinforce and accept your unique skills. Keep a file of lovely feedback you have received from clients and colleagues, and read through this if you need a little boost.
The antidote for fear is taking action. Create a simple plan of action, work out what your first step is and take it. It may feel a little uncomfortable at first, but this shows that you are stretching yourself and growing.
Change your focus
Feeling like a fraud means your focus is on yourself and what is going on internally. Change your focus to working with your clients and providing them with great value.
Rather than muddling through and keeping stuck, get help. Contact your coach, or use your preferred approach such as NLP or EFT to address your blocks. Do whatever it takes to stop feeling like an imposter and allow yourself to start to flourish.
If you struggle with feeling like an imposter, contact me to find out how I can help you.
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