04 Mar Why Imposter Syndrome Can Be A Good Thing
What Imposter Syndrome Might Really Be Telling You…
More and more people are admitting to Imposter Syndrome, and all too often the general consensus is that it’s all in our heads. I would like to challenge this, however, and state that there are occasions where Imposter Syndrome can actually tell us we are just that…an imposter!
Sometimes we have fears about being authentic and coming over a fraud. rather than brush them off, perhaps we are right to listen to them. Are you really doing what you want to be doing, or is your heart set on a different path? Do you have different values now than the ones you had when you started out? Do you feel like you’ve moved on? Or perhaps you never really had these values, and just saw this as a way to make money. Now, that particular satisfaction is starting to wear off.
This involves a bit of soul searching. I do think it’s a bit of a myth that we have to be totally passionate about what we do to do it well. Many people’s passion will never earn them enough money to live. We all know that, so there is often some compromise somewhere. However, if your values really are drastically out of line, it is worth questioning if you are, in fact, doing the right thing.
Feeling A Fraud
You may actually love what you do, but are nervous about coming under fire. This could be from your boss or just customers or colleagues who probe deeper than you want them to. Perhaps you feel that you haven’t got the right education/experience/ topical knowledge? There is one easy solution for this –get it. You can enroll on a course, find a mentor or start a reading programme, but knowledge is power and the more you gave the more powerful you will feel.
If it’s experience you need, can you do some pro bono work for a small company or charity and get some more experience under your belt, as well as help someone at the same time?
Centre of Attention
It may be that you just don’t like the public spotlight. Having to take centre stage makes you feel these wobbly feelings. You could try:
- Seeing a therapist to see if they can help you deal with this – it is worth the effort and expense as you may find this one comes back to haunt you. You can’t avoid the public eye forever
- Getting some speaker or confidence training. I recommend Susan Heaton Wright
- Considering a different profession or role where you don’t have to do this. We don’t all have to be performers
- Appointing someone else to take this role.
We can explore this further with coaching if this is a particular issue for you