4 Things You Can Do to Fight Impostor Syndrome

December 4, 2019

Everyone’s felt out of place at least once in their life.

But if you’re constantly troubled by nagging thoughts that prevent you from really enjoying your success, you may be struggling with impostor syndrome.

Impostor syndrome is the inability not only to acknowledge your success, but also, being unable to shake off the negative thoughts telling you that you don’t deserve it!

I’ve been doing some research and the numbers are truly shocking—70% of people experience this at some point or another.

However, all is not lost… there are a few things you can do to send your inner critique to the back seat.

Here’s what you can do right now to fight impostor syndrome!

1. What you’re feeling is pretty common.

In a room full of people— especially if all of them are mega-successful—it’s easy to think you’re the only one who doesn’t belong there.

But if we take a look at those stats I shared above… 7 out of 10 people will feel the same way you do, no matter how successful they are.

I’m not telling you this to discourage you. I’m telling you this so you know just how common it is to feel what you’ve been feeling!  

What you can do in is talk a bit more openly about it. Share your thoughts with friends and family but also, the people you network with professionally. I guarantee you’re going to be surprised by the amount of “Me too!” you’ll be hearing.

2. Your skills are just fine.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about constant growth and will always support people with an appetite to learn.

However, it’s easy to fall in the trap and believe that what you’re feeling will go away if you take just one more course, add one more title, or master just one more skill.

The thing is, impostor syndrome has nothing to do with your skills and your level of expertise, and it has a lot to do with the way you think about yourself.  

So, how do you make sure you’re comfortable with your knowledge?

Teach others what you know best. 

Host a workshop or do a free mini-course in an area you consider yourself to be an expert in. This is an amazing way to serve others and prove to yourself that you do know what you’re doing!

3. Be more aware of the way you talk about yourself.

Being humble is one thing; completely diminishing every single one of your successes is another.

Whenever someone pays you a compliment, stop saying things like:

  • Oh, that’s nothing, I just got lucky!
  • Nah, I didn’t do anything special!
  • Anyone can do this!
  • Everyone knows that I’m not that smart/talented/successful

Own your victories— there’s nothing wrong with accepting a little bit of praise.

You didn’t just get lucky. No, not everyone can do what you’re doing. Yes, you do have an idea how you got here… you worked very hard for it!

Pro tip: One of my favorite sayings goes like this: Hard work puts you where good luck can find you. Remind yourself of that next time you feel you’ve done something just because you were lucky!  

4. Make your own impostor syndrome antidote.

Since the impostor syndrome is known to kick in when you least need it, make your own antidote.

It can be anything that inspires you or motivates you, such as a list of all the obstacles you’ve overcome to get here, positive affirmations, a picture of your family, testimonials of all the people you’ve helped, etc.

Print your antidote and carry it in your wallet or just keep an online copy on your phone – and don’t hesitate to take a peek whenever you need to!

Have you ever felt this way? How do you fight the impostor syndrome?

Leave me a comment and share your story – you may even help someone else on their journey!

My writing has moved to Substack!

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