How To Beat Imposter Syndrome For Good
I GOT A PROMOTION AND I START PANICKING ABOUT IT.
I’m offered a new and higher position. I have been working towards this position for a long time. And the moment I got the offer, I froze. And do you know what I tell myself: “Hopefully nobody from the management team finds out that I cannot do it very well.” Viewed objectively: B.S. Otherwise I would have not gotten this promotion. I have the academic degrees, the right work experience and great references. But it lingers in my mind that I’m undeserving of this promotion.
Can you help?
Doubting ourselves is normal. Most people have thoughts like “Am I good enough?” or “Do I deserve this?” However, these kinds of thoughts can become problematic if you start to believe you’re a fraud and compulsively hide your accomplishments under a bushel.
This phoneme is called Impostor syndrome and describes high-achieving individuals who, despite their objective successes, fail to internalise their accomplishments and have persistent self-doubt and fear of being exposed as an intellectual imposter. They attribute success to external factors like luck or help from others while considering setbacks as evidence of their inadequacy.
Research shows that it can affect both men and women from all ethnic backgrounds.
During my years as an executive coach I’ve worked with dozens of clients who suffered from imposter syndrome. The biggest psychological barrier my clients had to overcome was that failing to attribute their performance to their actual competence impacted their mood and mindset in conscious and unconscious ways.
This affected their overall work experience (feeling always pressured to work harder, feeling demotivated, inner resignation) and their satisfaction with life.
That’s why it’s important to get a handle on the emotional and psychological factors that could be hindering your success and well being so you can understand and correct them.
Imposter Syndrome often comes with low self esteem anxiety and fear of failure.
The key to overcoming imposter syndrome is to regain a sense of control — because feeling in control is the direct opposite of being trapped in negative self doubts.
5 Ways to Overcome Imposter Syndrome!
1. HONOUR YOUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS
Write a journal every evening and list three positive work experiences. It is important to highlight your qualities and competencies. Ask yourself: “What kind of competence did I use today to accomplish a specific task or achieve a specific goal?” Do this exercise for two weeks to boost your self-esteem. It may feel very unfamiliar in the beginning to honour your achievements. Do it anyway.
2. LEARN TO RECEIVE POSITIVE FEEDBACK
Set yourself the goal to tolerate compliments or gifts, even if they make you uncomfortable (and they will). The best way to avoid your reflex of shoving off compliments is to prepare some responses and learn to use them immediately whenever you get positive feedback (promised you will feel like a robot). Responses can be: “Thank you” or “How kind of you to say that”.
3. PRACTICE SELF COMPASSION
Imposter comes with an addition: that critical voice in your head (that mostly bothers you with useless chatter). One way to deal with your inner critic is to replace it with self compassion. Would you talk to someone else or your children the way you talk to yourself? Hopefully not. So whenever the inner critic starts talking, turn it around and ask yourself what would you say to a dear friend or your child if they were in your situation.
4. CONTROL THE SHOW
Another way to deal with your critical voice is to tame it. How? Just put your negative self judgement into a short sentence: “I'm a fraud.” and hold onto this belief for 10 seconds. Now inside your head silently sing this thought to the melody of “Happy Birthday.” Or hear the sentence in the voice of Mickey Mouse or your favourite actor/actress. What happens when you do so?
5. LIST YOUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS
Listing all your accomplishments and the skills you used will remind you that you did not reach them by accident (therefore make a note for every accomplishment in which external factors helped you). You can even go a step further and write to every competence additional evidence to make your competencies and skills bulletproof to your inner judge.
Overcoming your Imposter Syndrome requires work, as it involves developing and maintaining healthier emotional habits but doing so, and especially doing so correctly, will provide a great emotional and psychological return on your investment. If it is too much work for you or you don't manage to overcome it on your own reach for professional help. The BrainBoss Method can help.
Interested? Let’s work together.
Are you facing a moment of transition, are self-sabotage, crippling procrastination or perfectionism preventing your success or are you are a stressed-out "achievement junkie"?
Could it help you to speak to a professional?
My goal as an executive coach is to reveal your mental & emotional blocks AND apply your strengths & skills. No matter where you are in the world, the sessions are held online on a secured health line.
With my unique ground-breaking BrainBoss Method you are able to uncover the deeper roots of thoughts, feelings and behaviour AND instantly Rewire your brain for success ad well-being.
An over 15-years career in counselling and coaching provides you a safe space to for your personal transformation.
Contact me today to learn how I can help make things better! www.brainbossmethod.com