As a therapist, I’ve worked with many high-achieving people who don’t feel worthy of their success. I have also worked with many underperforming persons that feel they deserve the results that they mete out in all that they do. This feeling is what we call the imposter syndrome.
Impostor syndrome involves feelings of inadequacy and chronic self-doubt, despite evidence to the contrary. No matter how successful these individuals were, they felt like frauds and their beliefs robbed them of mental strength.
So how do we deal with the imposter syndrome?
If you’ve ever felt like you aren’t good enough, you’re not alone. However, if you’re not careful, those feelings can keep you from reaching your greatest potential. The good news is that you can take steps to change your outlook so you can embrace your accomplishments.
Here are five ways to banish the belief that you’re not good enough:
1. Acknowledge your strengths.
You may have received a “lucky break,” but don’t chalk up all of your success to good luck. Acknowledge that you have legitimate talent. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be where you are today.
Write down your accomplishments and your strengths. Read over your list regularly—especially when you’re feeling down. Reminding yourself of your strengths can help chip away at your core belief that you aren’t good enough to be successful.
2. Share your passions with others.
It’s easy to forget how far you’ve come and how much you’ve learned. Teaching a class, starting a blog, or mentoring another professional can remind you of your accomplishments. Sharing your knowledge can also help you stay passionate about what you’re doing so you don’t burn out.
3. Address your self-doubt.
When self-doubt creeps in, don’t ignore it—address it. Respond to harsh self-criticism with something more compassionate. Talk to yourself like a trusted friend and refuse to believe your unrealistic, negative inner monologue.
4. Give yourself permission to play.
Changing your behavior is instrumental in changing the way you feel. Don’t forget to do the things you love. Give yourself permission to slack off sometimes so you don’t take yourself and your work too seriously. Doing so will help you enjoy the fruits of your labour, which can enable you to see that you deserve all that you’ve earned.
5. Accept compliments gracefully.
People with impostor syndrome too often shrug off kind words from others. They make excuses for their success or minimize their accomplishments. Commit to accepting compliments gracefully by offering a simple “thank you” when others acknowledge your work.
For these skills and more, contact ROUTE International Limited, the leading training organization in Uganda. You can reach them on 0785/705067193 or on email info@skilling youngadults.com or our website: www.skillingyoungadults.com where one can log in and sign up for our online modules