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Overcoming imposter syndrome at work

Many business professionals suffer from what is widely known as “imposter syndrome” at least once during their career. Everybody encounters the occasional spell of self-doubt – but sometimes, those feelings of inadequacy linger and limit you. Do you ever experience an inescapable feeling that you don’t belong, that you aren’t qualified, or that your success isn’t your own? That could be imposter syndrome rearing its ugly head. Here are some suggestions on how to combat imposter syndrome and take charge of your career.

Set reasonable expectations

To overcome imposter syndrome, you need to stop setting unattainable standards and expectations for yourself and thinking that factors such as luck or help are responsible for your success. You also need to stop blaming your own limitations for mistakes or failures. Failures are part of life and we all deal with them. At the same time, learn how to accept a compliment and draw strength from it.

Focus on you

If you’re constantly thinking about how others perform, you’ll fall down a rabbit hole of comparisons and struggle to dedicate time to your own performance. Calibrate your frame of view to yourself by refraining from evaluating others’ accomplishments.

Track your own success

Keep a journal and reflect on one or two ways you succeeded yesterday – anything you did well or accomplished. Then write down one or two things that you will make a point out of succeeding at today. This helps you stay focused, which will result in accomplishing more. It also creates a record of all the things you succeeded at. This will start to shape how you see yourself.

Become self-aware

Boost your confidence by not losing it to imposter syndrome to start. By boosting your self-awareness, you can start to see the early signs of imposter syndrome sneaking into your thoughts and replace those thoughts with confidence-building thoughts. Without a strong sense of self-awareness, confidence-eroding thoughts will invade your mind and take over before you know it. Stop them in their tracks

It’s normal to experience feelings of inadequacy and self-doubt – but if those feelings are consistently holding you back, consider making the necessary changes to manage them. Focus on grounding yourself in reality – the reality of your own personal achievements, the reality of failure, and the reality that you aren’t alone in occasionally feeling like a fraud. The old saying is “fake it till you make it.” But with impostor syndrome, you’ve already made it. The race is over. You won. Now it’s time for you to finally enjoy it.

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