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The Impostor Syndrome

Courtesy: Lupita Nyong’o in the horror film “Us”

Are you a high achiever that sometimes feels like you are not good enough or that your shot to the top was as a result of serendipitous sheer luck? The impostor syndrome is a psychological phenomenon where one feels inadequate and incompetent despite evidence showing that one is skilled and well suited for the position. This syndrome makes one fear that some day, they will be exposed as a fraud. The impostor syndrome is a hot mess of harmfulness and it can take various forms depending on one’s personality or circumstances. The impostor syndrome is in essence everyone else believing in you, except yourself.

Types of Impostor Syndrome

Psychologists have broken down this syndrome into the perfectionist, the superman or superwoman, the natural genius, the expert and the soloist.

Common thoughts associated with this syndrome

  • I must not fail
  • I feels like a fake
  • It is all down to luck
  • Success is no big deal – Downplaying success

How To Mitigate the Negative Effects of The Impostor Syndrome

The first step would be to recognize those feelings of impostorism when they emerge. It is a fact that awareness is the first step to change.

Secondly, it is time to rewrite your mental programmes. Instead to telling yourself that your superiors are going to find out your incompetence or that you do not deserve all the success coming your way, change that to reminding yourself that it is okay not to know everything and that you will learn as you go.

You should also feel free and talk about your feelings. You would be shocked at how many people had the same feelings as well. Be open about your feelings. Do not let those negative thoughts consume you.

Also, learn to reframe your failure as a learning opportunity. Look at what went wrong and how you can rectify the same for the future. Find out the lessons learnt and use them constructively for the future.

Even as you battle the impostor syndrome, be kind to yourself. Do not beat yourself down to the ground because of mere feelings of inadequacies. We are human, we make mistakes. Forgive yourself and move on.

It is also important to start visualizing success, no matter how small. Recognize the efforts you put in and believe that you deserve all the good things coming your way.

Have you ever suffered from the impostor syndrome? How did you cope with that? What worked and what did not work? How did this syndrome affect you and your work?

At Image Redefined, we help you change your image from the inside out. We build on confidence that stems from you as a being and translates in the clothes that you wear as well as how you carry yourself. We recognize that a lot of women in top positions at the workplace are often affected by thoughts of impostorism. We aim to change that and assure you that you are doing just great.

Talk to us today on 0715315960 or Email at to book an image consultation

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