Imposter syndrome or imposter experience as I like to call it is more commonly thought to be for the high achievers but is in fact something we all struggle with.
I remember when my book MY Power Statement was first published, and I went into Planet bookshop, and there it was on the shelf right in front of me. I was a little taken back, and instead of being overwhelmed with pride and excitement, I was nervous and embarrassed.
I felt like a fake, what would people think when they read the book? I thought to myself if they knew me, they would know I don’t know the first thing about writing a book. I don’t even know how I got to this point.
At that moment, I believed I didn’t deserve to have my book displayed. I did not feel worthy of my achievements.
I was having an imposter experience and diminishing my achievements to the point they meant nothing.
Think about it like this, have you ever felt like you;
don’t know what you are doing and everyone else does must do it alone because you can’t ask for help don’t deserve the praise you are receiving focus on what you haven’t done and what is not working instead of what is working are not good enough despite all your efforts
If you have experienced any of the above, you are familiar with the imposter experience. I imagine most of us feel like a fraud or fake or not good enough at some stage in our lives. It is part of the human condition.
I don’t think the issue is whether we experience these feelings; it is what we do with these feelings that matter.
If we keep our imposter hidden within, like a private companion, we are alone in our self- doubt and this aloneness feeds the illusion “I am the only one.”
We may not be able to banish these feelings, but we can free our attachment to them when we expose the imposter by giving voice to our true feelings and listen to others that are also willing to share their feelings.
Honest sharing expands our awareness and provides clarity that we are not alone in experiencing this phenomenon. This awareness opens up possibilities to implement a variety of strategies like open conversations with mentors or trusted friends, mindfulness practices, conscious circles and other practices that build confidence, resilience and courage.
The real challenge is not imposter experience itself, it is in giving it voice and setting it free.
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