Let's Talk Impostor Syndrome

Impostor syndrome is something I've heard of only recently. Mindlessly scrolling through my Facebook timeline, I stopped on a video a friend share describing what impostor syndrome is, and I found myself interested in and relating to this syndrome.

The definition of impostor syndrome is having a feeling that your successes were only due to luck, not due to any skill you may possess. Along with this feeling comes the fear that you'll be exposed as a "fraud" due to this. You'll constantly doubt your accomplishments and feel as if you don't deserve them.

This may sound familiar to you. Maybe you've heard about this, or maybe it's something you experience. Due to the overwhelming presence of social media, I began noticing the mention of impostor syndrome everywhere. Maybe that happened to you, too.

I've always considered myself to be a perfectionist, in both good and bad ways. Taking a step back and looking at my own behaviors led me to believe that this perfectionism may be a sign of impostor syndrome. But I never heard of it until that fateful Facebook post. I can't help but think that impostor syndrome gets buried behind its symptoms, pushed to the backs of our minds, and, although the symptoms are still important to pay attention to, they may feel like the main issue instead of impostor syndrome.

Besides being a perfectionist, other symptoms include feeling like you have to be an expert on everything you speak about, not speaking up due to the fear of sounding stupid, thinking that asking for help makes you weak, and a need to succeed in every aspect of their lives.

One way I like to deal with any feelings like this, especially lately, is to step back and take a deeper look at my thoughts. Is what I'm thinking something that will actually motivate me? Or will it hinder me by making me feel bad about myself and my abilities?

Obviously, it can be hard to catch myself every time, and I don't expect to. If you deal with this, you shouldn't expect to either (even though that may be hard to put into action). Also, make sure you're talking to people. You might find it hard to tell yourself that you're doing a great job, but your friends and family won't have any problem telling you that you are.

Have you ever had experiences with impostor syndrome?




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