“I just got lucky,” “Suddenly everyone will realize I’m here by accident,” “I’m taking someone else’s place” – if these phrases are familiar to you, you most likely have impostor syndrome. Studies show that about 70% of people around the world have experienced it at least once at some point in their lives. The syndrome manifests itself in this way: a person devalues their achievements or attributes them to external causes – luck and chance. Failures, on the contrary, are taken at one’s own expense and the person lives in constant expectation of revelations. In fact, lots of things you truly deserve because you’ve done everything you could for it. Even when you play BlackJack online at Playamo, you win mostly because you’ve chosen the right strategy.
Impostor syndrome can really interfere with life: people do not develop and do not fulfill themselves in their careers for fear of exposure, as well as devaluing their work. The origins of the syndrome are in early childhood. If someone is around who is doubtful, anxious or shameful – the child’s psyche will absorb it. “Are you the smartest one?”, “Where are you going, let the other kids perform” – phrases like these will stay in the child’s head, and the next time he will think that it is better “not to shine” and keep quiet.
Cope With Imposter Syndrome: 4 Main Steps
People suffering from impostor syndrome are not accustomed to supporting themselves, so they often blame themselves for “whining” and ask for support from others. These 4 steps will help change the situation:
- Learn to support yourself on your own. This is difficult, but you can learn from those who help you – family, friends or a therapist.
- Take responsibility for yourself. Admitting that imposter syndrome is part of you and you are suffering from your own actions is an incredibly powerful step.
- Put in order the area of life that the “impostor” attacks most often. If it has to do with work, record on paper or in notes your current situation. Describe your education, experience, skills, what colleagues or customers approach you with, what other people value in you, how many years you have been in the profession. As a result, you will see the real picture: if you have been in the profession for 10 years, you have a lot of skills and competencies, in reality there is no reason to doubt yourself. If there is something missing from your list, ask yourself if your expectations of yourself are too high. Reconcile them with your actual experience and knowledge.
- Don’t suppress your anger. Often people with imposter syndrome direct all anger at themselves, even when the addressee is standing across the table. Try to talk about what’s bothering you instead of destroying yourself with anxiety and anger.
Overcoming imposter syndrome is easier with a therapist, but you may be able to cope on your own. The main thing in this work is to separate the imposter label from your personality.