Imposter Syndrome

You may have heard of this. You may have had experiences of imposter syndrome in some way. Maybe you’ve heard of it, but don’t really know what it is.

So, what is Imposter Syndrome?

Imposter syndrome, also known originally as imposter phenomenon, is the inability to appreciate internalized success and achievement.
You feel and think you’re not good enough and not worthy of good things in your life.  You have fear of being seen as a fraud in your work environment and life.
It’s what you come to believe about yourself through your past and present experience. Which is why it is a phenomenon as it’s based on the events and experiences.
Imposter Phenomenon as it was originally identified in 1978 by Dr. Pauline Clance and Dr. Suzanne Imes. From their research on high achieving women in the academic and professional fields, Clance and Imes determined those women were experiencing a lack of belief in their own abilities.
The women also expressed a struggle to do well and truly succeed due to negative self-perceptions based upon expectations and assumed perceptions from others.
It’s been stated that 70% of all people will experience imposter phenomenon at some time or another in their life. Most will have this experience when there is a change in their life, a new job, new position or some other new developments in knowledge, skills and abilities.
High achievers will often experience imposter phenomenon more frequently and throughout their entire life often on a daily basis.
Over the many years since the first study, it has been shown that both women and men experience this restrictive mindset and how it causes such negative effects on their career and personal life.

So what are the 7 Experiences of Imposter Phenomenon?

When you’re experiencing imposter phenomenon…
  1. You compare actions, achievements, thoughts and abilities to others. You see others as being better and worthier than you. And no matter what you do, you’ll never be as good as you perceive others to be.
  2. You downplay your own knowledge, achievements and successes. You don’t think your knowledge, skills and achievements are anything special. You feel anyone could do as good if not better than you.
  3. You dismiss compliments and accolades from others on your knowledge, skills and accomplishments. Not only do you think what you achieve is nothing special, but you also don’t want the attention from others for fear of being seen as a fraud or fake.
  4. You often focus on your failures and mistakes instead of what you do well. To the point that even if you did 90 out of 100 actions correctly, you will only see and focus on those 10 actions you did wrong, made a mistake with or had an error.
  5. You only see external reasons for your successes and achievements.  For any success achieved you attribute it to luck or chance or that someone else felt bad for you.
  6. You struggle with and experience extreme self-doubt and lack of self-confidence.  This doesn’t mean you don’t try new opportunities such as higher education or job advancement, however you go into it already feeling as though you don’t deserve it and aren’t good enough for the opportunity.
  7. You have a fear of failure and fear of success. You are afraid to fail, feeling that it would ruin your life and future and also prove that you aren’t good enough. At the same time you fear success thinking it will bring more attention to you and expose your flaws and show you for a fraud.
This is imposter phenomenon. The thoughts and feelings you go through daily. The thoughts and feelings you may have experienced for years.
Due to those experiences you will also experience anxiety, stress, unhappiness, fear of never having a better life, and even depression. These all will impact your career, future potential job opportunities, leadership decision as well as your daily life.
More than likely if you are having experiences of imposter phenomenon, you don’t tell others. You rarely bring it up for fear of others agreeing with you, or them just dismissing your thoughts. So you keep it to yourself and your imposter mindset continues to restrain the potential growth, development and happiness in your life.
It continues to restrict your thoughts and emotions of your true self. Your abilities, qualities and potential to achieve your desires.
But you can break out of this mindset. You can learn to appreciate your qualities and character, and know that you were the one who achieved the successes. At the same time learn to see failure and mistakes not as ending in ruin, but as learning lessons.
If you are ready to breakout free of this mindset and start building and living the life you desire, message me. Let’s start talking on how we work together to empower you to appreciate your own qualities and believe you are good enough….because You are!
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