Imposter syndrome is feeling inadequate—even when the opposite is true. Believe it or not, people who are very successful in life experience it the most. They typically feel they don’t deserve their achievements or successes.
There are many people in your life who feel this way all the time, especially when new opportunities come along.
Have you ever heard the saying “fake it until you make it?” This comes in handy when you’re feeling unsure or undeserving. You don’t have to have all of the answers when stepping into something new. Offer what you do have and run with it.
On the flip side, there are some people who think they already know everything they need to. They are over-confident and not willing to admit their weaknesses or lack of knowledge. This is where feelings versus reality come into play.
Realizing that you do not know everything and remaining teachable is very important if you truly want to lead a meaningful life.
Take a moment to read this quote by Neil Gaiman: “This first problem of any kind of even limited success is the unshakable conviction that you are getting away with something, and that any moment now they will discover you.”
This quote is spot on. Honestly, who hasn’t felt this from time to time? It isn’t an abnormal or uncommon feeling. It comes from the reality of knowing you are human, but a human who still has a lot to learn. Overcoming this feeling means being a human who’s willing to take a chance at success and make yourself vulnerable.
It’s okay to identify areas where you lack knowledge. You can’t know everything. This is where learning takes place, and finding the right people to mentor you along the way can help a lot. Seek out people who will help shape you into becoming what you desire to be.
Another thing: Stop comparing yourself to other people and where they are in life. You are you for a reason; you don’t want to be them because that’s not who you are. There is nothing wrong with being inspired by other people to achieve some of their same goals in life, but make sure you do it for the right reasons.
“…by being able to identify these imposter feelings and recognizing them for what they are, I’ve been able to know that they are just feelings and not facts.” - Maryam Pasha
“The story you are telling yourself about your competence or incompetence… it’s all invented.”
- Seth Godin
Being confident in who you are as a person is very important. Whether you feel like you have it all together or not doesn’t matter. Honestly, does anybody you know really have it all together? We’re all experiencing the successes of life wondering if we deserve it. In the end, what matters is that you gave it all you have and didn’t let fear hold you back.