Imposter Syndrome

Anxiety or self-doubt that results from persistently undervaluing one’s competence and active role in achieving success, while falsely attributing one’s accomplishments to luck or other external forces.

Have you ever looked around a room or new environment and wondered what you’re doing there?
Or found yourself talking to someone and thinking that they know what you’re talking about better than you do?

I think at some point we all have to a greater or lesser degree.

The important thing is what you do about those thoughts and feelings after you’ve acknowledged them.
Five common reactions are:

Overwork oneself to make up for feelings of inadequacies.
Set unrealistically high goals and feel crushed when they are not met.
Feel dissatisfied with ones level of knowledge and continually try to learn more.
Never be entirely happy with ones work and fixate on the tiny mistakes rather than the strengths.
Work alone for fear of appearing weak or being ‘found out’.

It is all too easy to look around a new environment and project your fears on to other people. You may convince yourself that people are being nice to you because they feel sorry for you.
You think that people aren’t talking to you because they don’t like you or regard you as inferior. Perhaps, even, you think they are purposely setting you up to fail.

Fun fact – nobody in that room can hear your thoughts!

Just as important, maybe, you can’t hear theirs.

Chances are they’re being nice to you because they want you as a valuable team member and can learn from your experiences.
Could be that they aren’t talking because they are really busy or wrapped up in their own problems and might even appreciate some help.
It’s even possible that are asking you to help with tasks because they genuinely believe you’re the best person in that environment for the job.

Next time you’re feeling a bit shaky or unsure of your environment, take a minute to read the room. Ask yourself , instead of what you believe people are thinking about you, what are you thinking about them?

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