Have you ever been in a meeting and you think all the other people in the room know so much more than you, and they all seem so much more sure of their knowledge, but then they all look to you for the answer to a question? And you wonder why? You may be experiencing “imposter syndrome”. Read on to understand it more and help yourself worry about it less.
Apparently many people experience “imposter syndrome”, where even though they may have received awards and honours for their particular work or art, they still think they don’t deserve the accolades. They think they will be “found out”, and someone will realise they don’t know it all, they don’t have all the answers, and they still have room to learn.
What they don’t realise is lots of other people are also feeling this way. If you think about it, many of us rarely voice this self doubt, and in turn we don’t hear from it others. So we are unaware that we are not alone.
Next time you think you shouldn’t be in your position, or undeserving of praise and acknowledgement, try these tips:
- be aware of your feelings, notice when you are telling yourself you are not worthy, and tell yourself why you are (“yes, I may not know everything, but I have completed a University degree in this subject so am pretty knowledgable“, or “my year of experience in this job has taught me a lot, I’ve got helpful information to share“)
- talk to others about your feelings, ask them if they have ever experienced anything similar and have a conversation
- ask for feedback when you complete a task, a piece of work, etc., you may be surprised what other people think of your work
- know that sometimes you will be in situations where you don’t have the answers, but that is okay, nobody was born with all the answers, just take the moment to learn and grow
- revisit your past accomplishments, work experiences, art work, etc., and don’t down play what you have done, rather, celebrate it, remember you completed these accomplishments and you are unique.
It’s okay to be out of your depth sometimes, so long as you don’t freeze, so long as you harness the situation…and try to turn it into a force for good.Mike Cannon-Brookes
Have you ever experienced imposter syndrome?