Are You a Fraud?
Have any of these thoughts ever popped up?
- Who do I think I am?
- I'm not good enough.
- Will I get exposed?
- I don't belong here.
- Am I a fraud?
Have you ever felt like you were out of place and didn't belong in an environment you've worked long to achieve? Whether it is starting a new job, school, or career, these looming questions seem to appear when we are in the midst of our greatest goals. This phenomenon is called Imposter syndrome in which we experience chronic self-doubt, intimidation, and inadequacy in our capabilities and accomplishments. Despite the education, experience, and success, we are unable to internalize our accomplishments. These moments make us feel fraudulent despite the evidence of our success because it attacks our confidence and changes our self-belief. These negative self-beliefs can make us anxious or depressed. This experience occurs across many different populations and careers. In fact, many psychological researchers have linked these phenomena with perfectionism in highly successful people, especially in minorities and women.
Overall, these questions of self-doubt are destructive to our self-esteem and overall mental health. So how can we challenge our mindset, regain our confidence, and reclaim our achievements?
What We Can Do
- Why am I so hard on myself?"
- What am I afraid of? "
- How does being afraid/self-critical serve me in the grand scheme?"
Challenge your thoughts:
Normalize & Practice self-compassion
- It's normal to feel this way and I am not the only person experiencing this."
- Its impossible to be perfect, but I'm darn good and I'm proud of that."
The feelings of Imposter Syndrome are universal and have haunted the most successful and accomplished people across every industry. We compare ourselves to those at the top because we want to feel powerful and confident. We want to be worthy of the accolades and achievements because it validates our hard work. But, we can't have all the answers or experience, and in the grand scheme of things, the marathon never ends.
That's why it is important to remember that it takes courage to talk about Imposter Syndrome. It takes courage to tackle the doubts and inadequacy you are feeling. Don't let imposter syndrome stop you from chasing your aspirations. You've worked so hard to earn them. You are worthy of your accomplishments because you put in the foundation to get there. Lastly, try to take a second look at the totality of your experiences and accomplishments and focus on your triumphs. When claiming your achievements don't add qualifiers. YOU'VE EARNED IT PERIOD.
Remember that time you thought you couldn’t overcome something and you did? Now have faith in yourself, your abilities, and your experiences to carry you through once more. BE RELENTLESS!