Imposter syndrome is a state of mind that some successful individuals have. They don’t feel that they’re actually successful or they don’t feel like they deserve their success. They believe that it was all down to luck, nothing to do with their abilities or efforts.
This self-doubt is driven by the fear of someone finding out that they don’t belong in the position they hold.
Many who have imposter syndrome believe that they are the only ones who are feeling insecure. In reality, everyone feels insecure at some point in their lives. It’s just that some people are more aware of it than others.
If you regularly think negative thoughts or believe you don’t deserve what you have, you may be showing signs of imposter syndrome. Negative thoughts may include:
- “I’m a fake.”
- “I don’t deserve this success.”
- “People will find out.”
- “I don’t have what it takes.”
- “I’m a fraud.”
- “I don’t know why I thought I had enough experience for this.”
Overcoming low self-confidence and imposter syndrome
If you want to take steps to overcome your lack of confidence at work, try some of the following tips.
- Strike a power pose. According to research, holding a power pose for two minutes can increase confidence and reduce stress.
- Stop aiming to be perfect. You don’t need to be perfect to add value. Mistakes are part of the journey of being successful. They give you the perfect opportunity to learn.
- Take a reality check. Try to counter your negative thoughts with evidence that proves them wrong.
- Continue until you believe in yourself. Or simply put, “fake it until you make it”. Actions can create feelings, so keep doing it until you believe it.
- Remember that everyone experiences self-doubt. There’s nothing wrong with you feeling self-doubt – everyone does.
- Own your success. Notice how much work you put into achieving things. Don’t attribute them to luck or discount them.
- Don’t compare yourself to other people. Comparing yourself to others will focus your mind on the things you are lacking. Instead, try to focus on your strengths and doing your best.
- Accept positive feedback. It can be very easy to shrug off or minimise any positive feedback you receive. People aren’t just saying these things to be nice – accept it!