Do you ever question yourself, feel not good enough? How often do you think that you aren’t capable, that you’re not worthy? Even to the extent that it’s as if other people are aware of it too and are watching and listening to you and rejecting you.
Imposter Syndrome is very common, even those who have achieved find themselves questioning what they’re all about and are concerned that they’ll be caught out and exposed as fakes.
My beliefs and feelings of inadequacy began in my childhood years. I lived in an era where showing emotions wasn’t the done thing, at least not in my family. There were no hugs, no compliments, and no well-meaning conversations. It’s only since I reached my adult years and reflected on my upbringing that I realized how this emotional neglect had impacted on me.
I have certificates and credentials to prove my skills and knowledge, but underneath I often felt insecure in my own skin, waiting and expecting to be judged and exposed.
Thoughts would arise like; I’m a fake, why should they listen to me; I got lucky, I was in the right place at the right time. I also struggled to accept compliments and praise, brushing the words aside.
I’ve since learned to overcome these self-defeating thoughts and beliefs. I pay attention to my not good enough triggers and immediately change my thoughts. I focus on feeling calm and confident and what believing in myself means to me. I’m proud of my achievements and when people acknowledge me, I accept compliments graciously. If any doubts arise, I focus on the positive.
Feeling like a fraud is common, but it isn’t often discussed. What sets off your inner critic and what do you say to yourself? How can you free yourself from this conditioning?
Firstly, remind yourself of what you have accomplished, do this often. Disclose your feelings to someone close to you, talk about how it affects you. Seek out a mentor for guidance. Teach what you know, or become a mentor. Nurture others; you know a lot more than you think you do. Allow yourself to fail. Stay humble; know that no one is perfect.
Feeling like an imposter can also be connected to worrying about what others think about us. This inner critic can crop up at the worst moment, like when we’re in a group situation and someone asks us a question. We worry about being judged, which is self-defeating. I know I’ve had the thought, “what if people don’t understand me or what if they think I’m irrelevant?”
I focus on positive comments people have made. I tell myself I am a confident communicator, that people enjoy listening to me. I choose calmness, it’s like putting a smile on my face, which always makes me feel happier.
When we love and respect and believe in ourselves, that’s what we project and that’s what we’ll get back from others.
I constantly remind myself that our thoughts become our reality.