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Are you an Imposter?

This week, I want to discuss a topic that many of us can relate to: Imposter Syndrome.

It's that nagging feeling of self-doubt and inadequacy, where we believe we're not good enough and everyone else has it all together. We chalk our successes up to luck rather than our own abilities.

Do you have Imposter Syndrome? Let's see.

Do you have an extreme lack of self confidence and feelings of inadequacy? Are you constantly comparing yourself to other people and suffer with anxiety? Do you find it hard to accept praise? Do you turn down opportunities for growth or visibility in your business?

Imposter syndrome can manifest itself as People Pleasing, Perfectionism, Paralysis and Procrastination and there are 5 different types:

1. The Perfectionist

Perfectionism and imposter syndrome often go hand-in-hand. Think about it: Perfectionists set excessively high goals for themselves, and when they fail to reach a goal, they experience major self-doubt and worry about measuring up. Whether they realize it or not, this group can also be control freaks, feeling like if they want something done right, they have to do it themselves.

2. The Superwoman/man

Since people who experience this phenomenon are convinced they’re phonies amongst real-deal colleagues, they often push themselves to work harder and harder to measure up. But this is just a false cover-up for their insecurities, and the work overload may harm not only their own mental health, but also their relationships with others.

3. The Natural Genius

Young says people with this competence type believe they need to be a natural “genius.” As such, they judge their competence based ease and speed as opposed to their efforts. In other words, if they take a long time to master something, they feel shame.

4. The Soloist

Sufferers who feel as though asking for help reveals their phoniness are what Young calls Soloists. It’s OK to be independent, but not to the extent that you refuse assistance so that you can prove your worth.

5. The Expert

Experts measure their competence based on “what” and “how much” they know or can do. Believing they will never know enough, they fear being exposed as inexperienced or unknowledgeable.

So, can it be cured? There are mixed opinions on this but there are certainly a lot of things you can do to help.

1. Firstly, know that you're not alone, in various studies imposter syndrome has been reported in as high as 82% of people

2. Let go of your inner perfectionist. Take a step back and ask yourself: When is good enough, good enough?

3. Track and measure your success. You can't deny the facts. This one will depend on your own field of work but record your output and any positive feedback you get to refer back to.

And lastly, be kind to yourself. Try to stop the negative self talk as it happens and replace it with something positive instead.

You are good enough.

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