Have you ever felt that you weren’t good enough? That you weren’t qualified for a career you wanted, or a project you were going to start, even though you actually had plenty of experience in the field? That you aren’t capable of achieving some goal that you set? I’m sure you have, and I know this, because I go through it every day, or almost every day. Well there’s actually a psychological term for it: Imposter Syndrome. It’s defined as “is a psychological pattern in which one doubts one's accomplishments and has a persistent internalized fear of being exposed as a "fraud".”
I have always heard this term thrown around but never really understood it. But one day I was listening to a podcast or book and they said pretty much what I said above and it just clicked. More men need to understand this concept. There are many areas of our lives that FEEL like we are lacking and not providing to our full capabilities. There is the chance that you really are doing the best you can at this time, but because of this Imposter Syndrome you don’t feel adequate.
This is a battle that I deal with regularly, and not something that is easy to remove from one’s thoughts. The easiest way that I’ve been able to handle it, is through GRATITUDE and AUTHENTICITY. Practicing gratitude allows me to understand what I have, and to see that it is mostly because of my doing. There are clearly things that I am grateful for that are results of things outside of my control, but there are just as many that I had control over. Authenticity is the real key to battling imposter syndrome.
See, Imposter Syndrome truly says about ourselves is “I care about what I’m trying to do and I’m afraid of what will happen if I fail.” Sure, you might fail at what you’re trying to achieve, but what happens if you don’t? These thoughts of being inadequate or unqualified or a fraud come from a place of doubt and fear. But as long as you are being authentic to yourself then there isn’t anything to worry about. Whatever it is that is creating this imposter feeling, if it something that you truly care about and really brings you excitement and energy, then you are being true to yourself.
The next time you start feeling that doubt creep in from the dark corners of the back of your mind, ask yourself this: “Am I being true to myself?” This practice will begin to crush that doubt. Now I titled this blog post SIMPLE, I want to be clear, this will NOT be easy. It is simple in that it isn’t a convoluted psychotherapy trick. You would be surprised how powerful the way we talk about ourselves is