Have you ever found yourself dealing with anyone of or have experienced dealing with any of the five things listed below?
- An irrational fear of people finding out that you’re a phony.
- A belief that you’re not qualified to do what you’re skilled at.
- Feeling like you’re being fraudulent.
- No confidence in yourself, abilities, skills or talent.
- Thinking that your achievements and successes are because of luck.
This is known as imposter syndrome. The Oxford dictionary defines imposter syndrome in the following way, “the persistent inability to believe that one’s success is deserved or has been legitimately achieved as a result of one’s own efforts or skills.”
The legendary author, poet and playwriter Maya Angelou said, “I have written eleven books, but each time I think, Uh oh, they’re going to find out now. I’ve run a game on everybody, and they’re going to find me out.”
Know that you’re not alone in feeling this way. The Journal of Behavioral Science writes that “It is estimated that 70% of people will experience at least one episode of this imposter phenomenon in their lives (Gravois, 2007). “Harvey (1981) asserted that anyone can view themselves as an imposter if they fail to internalize their success, and this experience is not limited to people who are highly successful.”
Many people struggle and suffer in silence with feeling like an imposter or feeling like a complete fraud. It would help if we talk to friends, we trust about what we’re feeling. We experience self-doubt and lack of confidence. We discount and diminish our abilities and our accomplishments on an ongoing basis. Some of us even feel shameful as a result of our imposing impostor syndrome.
It’s essential to know that there is no magical fix. However, you can stop imposter syndrome in its tract and put it where it belongs — ‘behind you.’ To move past imposter syndrome and be confident in yourself and abilities. You must start by reframing your thought patterns as well as learning to think empowering thoughts a process that will take time. So please lighten up on yourself during this process. Take time to laugh and enjoy your journey to freedom from feeling inadequate and like a fraud.
I want to encourage you not to let imposter syndrome cripple you and your ability to succeed any longer. Don’t let it drive you to a depth of perfectionism from which you feel there’s no escaping. See it for what it is a thief. A thief of your time, energy, ability and confidence. You can stop the feelings that imposter syndrome brings with it, but you must give yourself permission to break free from it.
I want to share with you the thirteen best ways to stop imposter syndrome to elevate your confidence:
- Learn and practice thinking differently.
- Purposely change the thoughts that you’re thinking.
- Reframe your thinking and your speech when reacting to imposter syndrome.
- Ask for feedback from others about your skill or their satisfaction with your work or service.
- Revisit the positive feedback you receive to remind yourself of your track record of success.
- Be okay with not being great all of the time. Be okay with not knowing everything and with not always having the answer. It allows you to be realistic and sincere.
- Use the words” I’m excited” when you feel irrational fear or come up with one of your own.
- Change your negative self-talk to uplifting and empowering self-talk. Words matter, especially the ones you speak to yourself.
- Stop comparing yourself to others. Your only competition is yourself.
- Internalize your successes by truly owning what you have been able to accomplish as an individual. The more connected you are with your accomplishments. The less likely you are to feel like an imposter.
- Internalize the fact that you are the real deal by accepting that there is no one else like you in the world who can do you better.
- Focus on how you can serve others and the benefits they can receive from your service instead of shining a spotlight on yourself only.
- Take ownership of every area of yourself and your life. What happens to you and your life is not up to someone else; it’s up to you and only you.
We can all learn the art of self-rescuing. Why am I saying that? I’m saying it because too often we are sitting and suffering in silence. When all we need to do is to own that we hold power in our hands to get the help and support we need. By owning how we feel we remove the shame associated with it, which gives us our power back.
So that’s what I mean by self-rescuing. Daring to be honest with ourselves, accountable, and responsible for our feelings, words, thoughts, beliefs, and actions. Only then we can begin to tap into our authentic self and stand up to that voice in our head that’s accusing us of being frauds.
I hope you found the thirteen best ways to stop imposter syndrome to elevate your confidence helpful. I believe that we can prevent those impostor feelings and create the changes we need for success in any area of our lives. We need to start by reframing our thoughts and changing our thinking. So that we’re able to quickly internalize our abilities, talents, skills, and successes. Go ahead, reframe your thinking to outsmart imposter syndrome.