Combating Imposter Syndrome
What is Imposter Syndrome?
Imposter Syndrome is that voice inside your head that tells you that you are a complete fraud, even when all the evidence says otherwise. First, you should know, this is COMPLETELY NORMAL! Most people feel this way at some point. I feel this way ALL THE TIME.
Imposter syndrome is based in deep rooted fears and limiting beliefs; fear of failure, fear of judgement, and even fear of success.
1. Stop the Judgmental Mind
Start to recognize that voice and the part of you that criticizes all the time, or the judgmental mind. It’s important to recognize a couple things about the thoughts coming from the judgmental mind: 1. They aren’t necessarily true (sometimes they are) 2. They aren’t always conscious
When you notice a thought come up, ask yourself “Is this thought helpful or hurtful?” If it is helpful, use it and thank yourself for allowing growth. If it is hurtful, recognize it then tell it that it doesn’t serve you and throw it away.
This isn’t a practice that comes easily. So don’t be discouraged if it feels weird or inauthentic. It will take some practice to get used to it, but eventually it will start to sink in. The amazing neuroplasticity of our brains means we are able to rewire the way we think and quiet those limiting beliefs that keep trying to sabotage your success.
As a culture, us Americans are pretty competitive people. We are taught that there is only one No. 1 and if that’s not you, you’re failing. Obviously this is just not true. Everyone has their own unique set of skills and challenges, so comparing yourself to anyone, even if they have the same job as you, is like comparing apples and giraffes. Stop comparing yourself to everyone else. You don’t have their history, their challenges, or their timeline. The only person you should ever (gently) compare yourself to, is you. How have you improved? How are you dealing with your circumstances? Remember: it’s not about where you are, it’s about how far you have come.
This night time practice has CHANGED my life. Every night before bed, I take out my Accomplishments Journal and list everything that I accomplished that day, big or small. Some days doing the dishes is a big accomplishment for me, some days it’s booking a high paying client. Put it ALL in there.
You can use any empty notebook for this, or keep it as a digital file. And when you start thinking “I’m not doing enough”, “I haven’t accomplished anything!”, you can take out the journal and look back on all the amazing things you did yesterday, last week, or for the last two months.