Impostor syndrome is a fear living inside us. You fear that you are a poser, not worthy of any accomplishment, or anything you want to do in life.
Even successful people, like CEO of Starbucks for example, have this syndrome too — when outside they act very confident but deep inside they are being panicked the hell out of their insecurity. They too, can not believe that they are worth what they are having. And they are scared that someone would find it out.
In fact, all of us are affected by this syndrome, once in a while.
Like, ever wrote an article, published it then hid it away because you thought it was s*** and everyone would laugh at it? (for me, publishing these lines and setting them to Public takes a lot of self-encouragement).
Like, ever prepared a speech before your colleagues, but when finished it, you just wanted to dig a hole and felt like never appearing on Earth again?
Like, ever stood in front of your company’s newcomer and feared that they would find that you’re not as good as a senior?
Like, being an excellent student with good grades but heard them said that it was all because your Dad is the Principle of that school?
Like, many embarrassing/fraud/useless/self-slapping moments like these?
Why do you have such feeling? Such fear?
It begins with the fact that we’re all well aware of things we don’t know. And fear comes from what we don’t know. We don’t know if we can do certain things in life — from an interview with a new company that you’ve been wanting to apply for, or just like what I’m doing — writing and don’t know if people will find it useful/interesting to them (or they’ll think I’m just talking about things they already know).
And for all the things we don’t know, we’re scared of what people will judge us. “Oh, that guy I thought he was an expert but seems like he is just good at boasting his ass off” — something like that. Suddenly you feel the purse of “you need to be perfect” rushing under your vein. However, at the same time, you need to fail too. You need to learn, need to be yourself.
As now I know that I have this impostor syndrome sometimes, I start to find my ways to overcome it.
1. You know the name, say it out loud and face it
Whenever I doubt myself and feel inferior aka not qualified to do anything, I let myself acknowledge that that guy *impostor syndrome* has come up again.
I need to know that I’m having a problem recognizing myself, not a problem with how the world will see me.
2. Have a conversation with your inner self, more frequently
I have just started this recently. Thanks to the talks I had several times with my little sister at Cong cafe, I realized that I’ve been forgetting my inner self. I didn’t listen to my own voice. Then even when I need to speak out my thoughts, it’s really hard to do so. I can not speak out my thoughts properly if I can’t even have a proper talk with myself.
And by not listening to my own cries, the whisper of self-acknowledgement, the voice within, I forget about who I am and why I get what I get today. That’s why I easily sink in negative feelings about myself.
Our life this day seems like being put on a fast-traced treadmill. Slow it down and spend time to understand your inner self.
3. Embrace that everyone makes mistake, everyone has things they can’t do
Nobody is perfect. Everyone makes mistakes. You hear that often, but do you really embrace it?
Learn to accept that you can’t be perfect at times. And be thankful even when you’re a novice in what you are doing.
Because one of the benefits of being the beginner is to have many chances to experience, to look at life with a refreshing perspective. And you know what, you might think others know a lot more than you, but they actually don’t. And they are even suffering from the impostor syndrome, just like you.
4. Stop looking at others, look at you
Don’t compare yourself to others. Compare you of today with you of yesterday. Have you improved from your yesterday version?
There’s one saying: Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle. You’ll just get drown in fear and discontinuation.
Your ability and potential don’t deserve being treated that way.
5. Find your stand in this life
Find a place for yourself in this world. Find a voice to speak up. Find a place to connect.
I’ve never been sharing my writings on Facebook status before, but since I got tired of the negativity of all bad news on it, I decided to contribute my voice and add positivity in my life — and hopefully, in the life of people around me.
And by this, I feel secure. I know I’m valued. I’m not scared of the question “What can I do?” anymore.
I know I can do anything, as long as I have the will.