What‌ ‌is‌ ‌Imposter‌ ‌Syndrome?‌ ‌

If I had a pound for every time I heard someone use the term “Imposter Syndrome”, I would easily have a second home somewhere exotic – a place I would currently be hiding from COVID-19!
It is a term used often and sometimes a little too often…a discussion of my thoughts on this will be saved for another blog post, however.

70% of people suffer with imposter syndrome at least once in their life. You are not alone.
As shown from studies in the U.S.

Today, I want to focus on the statistic 70%.

More than 70% of people suffer at least once with imposter syndrome in their lifetime – most of us will experience it more than once or even daily, unfortunately.

This 70% is why you hear it so much.
It is so common.
It is not just you this is happening to – even if it might feel like it.

Over the coming months, I will be discussing more about imposter syndrome but today I want to address what it is. Having that base understanding of what it is will allow you to determine if it is a factor in your life, where it shows up most and from there, better define how you can manage it.

I would love to say I am going to offer you a cure but I don’t believe there is one.

With most things relating to mindset, I do not believe that there is a one-off cure and I refuse to raise your hopes by offering one.
My goal is to help you find sustainable change to manage your mindset so that it becomes automatic and not an overwhelming amount of effort that feels impossible to complete.

My 3 steps to mindset success are to define, strategise and implement in order to be successful in creating the mindset, life and happiness you desire.
You keep repeating this and eventually you will reach a point where the improvements you are making are what are known as marginal gains. A topic for another post!

3 step mindset strategy framework. Define the problem, create a simple sustainable strategy, implement the strategy effectively and then repeat.
Keeping it simple with our 3-step formula for mindset success!

Today we will address a little of the define segment.

So, what is imposter syndrome exactly??

Imposter syndrome was first introduced in 1978 by two women, Dr. Pauline R. Clance and Dr. Suzanne A. Imes, after they wrote an article following their findings of studying high achieving women titled “The Impostor Phenomenon in High Achieving Women: Dynamics and Therapeutic Intervention”.

During this study, they interviewed 150 women all of who had been recognised for their excellence and were classed as high achieving. Everyone knew them to be successful and yet these women had a few things in common.

  • They believed their success was based on luck.
  • They believed that all those that had recognised them to be overestimating their abilities.
  • They showed symptoms related to depression, generalized anxiety, and low self-confidence

There were broad assumptions made and some of which I believe to be likely causes but it is important for me to address that since then more studies have been done and it has been found that imposter syndrome is found in more people than just high-achieving women.

You can experience imposter syndrome in so many different parts of life – not just work.

It can show up in relationships, friendships, money worries, health etc.and it is important to understand where yours shows up most or if it is quite general over a few topics.

Imposter syndrome is that feeling where you do not feel good enough, you feel like a fraud or an imposter. You might feel as if you would be found out, that you are not competent at whatever task you are doing, that you are continually putting on this front to convince others you are competent.

Starting to sound familiar?
Try answering these…

Questions to ask yourself to see if you are struggling with imposter syndrome.

Do I doubt my own abilities?
Do I own my successes or do I believe they are luck or due to others?
Does living up to the expectations of others cause me stress and anxiety?
Do I set myself unrealistic goals that I struggle to ever achieve?
Do I try and do ALL the things to prove my worth?
Do I make myself busy and not rest effectively for fear or missing something?
Does making a mistake – even a small one – set me into a state of panic?
Do I always tell people that I don’t know that much?

Hannah Schaapkens journaling about imposter syndrome
Write down you answers to these questions for future reflection

If you answered yes to ANY of those questions
…there is a mindset issue that needs to be worked on to allow you to reduce the stress, anxiety and fear in your life whilst increasing your ability to bring effective rest and relaxation in.

If you answered yes to a number of those questions
… you are likely struggling with imposter syndrome.

If you don’t feel any of them relate to you at all – and you are being truly honest with yourself about this…
…then congratulations! You are imposter free!
It will help to read on and read future blogs though as I will be addressing a number of things to allow you to support others who may be struggling.

If you find there are any mindset issues you are struggling with or imposter syndrome specifically – I hope the future blog posts I create and services I provide can support you in creating that sustainable change I mentioned before.

What next?

No two people are the same.

How you manage imposter syndrome or any mindset issue for that matter will differ for everyone as the life they lead, their culture, how they were brought up and their goals, success and values as a person differ. 

It is important that if you are struggling with imposter syndrome you find a way to manage it.
Being stressed, anxious, and unrested is not a healthy way to live – trust me I have been there and I am so glad I learned to manage mine.

Imposter syndrome can hold you back from so much but learning to manage it can bring such great inner peace.

I am releasing a challenge that is free to help you on your journey to managing your imposter syndrome. You can sign up here.

It will all be over email. You will have access to video trainings, workbooks, personalised support form me and discounts off my services should you find you need further support.

If you want more personalised support, check out my services page and see if there is any way I can support you on that journey or book a call to learn more about them here what would be best for you here.

I cannot wait to support you through the blogs, my services and the challenge as we head on this imposter syndrome busting journey together!

Wishing you the best 2021!

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