I have worked in my company for nearly 8 years and yet I still suffer daily from what is known as Imposter Syndrome and I am always waiting for someone to point the finger and go
” You should not be here ” and I quite often down play my role when people ask that question of ” what do you do ?” ! I always felt I was alone in this thinking until I started to read Slow At Work by Aoife McElwain , she has dedicated an entire section of her book to the idea of feeling like an imposter and the more I thought about it the more I feel like I am not alone in thinking this way and that it is being applied by people in every aspect of their life ! I am willing to bet that if you look closely at your life you will have applied this thinking and listened to your inner critic at least once in some part of your life , whether it be as a parent , in the office or even in your relationships !
I suppose the biggest question we could ask ourselves is why do we think like this ? Is it because we genuinely feel that way or does that little nagging inner voice just get so loud it takes over all of our rational thoughts ? I for one definitely listen to that inner nag way too much ,I especially listen to it when it comes to work , to the extent where I second guess everything that I do and every comment on any project that someone makes , I do find that on some particularly stressful days I even let this nag start to question my parenting ! I am sure others may not do this but I question myself thoroughly before I post anything on social media or even tell people about a post I am writing or a kids craft that I have done and pictured , why ? I am terrified that people will go ” who does she think she is ” in fact at work I never mention blogging / writing as the same inner nag tells me daily that I am rubbish and I have no qualifications so who would take me seriously !
In Aoife’s book she mentions how we would never allow anyone speak to our friends the way the our inner nag speaks to us and she is right ! If we heard other people say to our friends or family half the things our own inner nags say to us we would be outraged ! Maybe we should start being outraged at that nag as well ?!
How do I plan on letting go of this Imposter Syndrome ?! That is a hard one and a work in progress , I have started to make some subtle changes to my day to day activities that might help you along as well !
- I am trying daily to counteract the negative voice with a positive one ( In the hopes of eventually drowning out that nag 😉 )
- Change the words that I use to describe my job , my life , my blogging / writing , I am trying very hard to not use the words Just and Only to describe anything I have done or I am currently doing !
- Acknowledge my accomplishments as an outcome of hard work not luck !
- Accept any praise received without deflecting it ( I am going to dump the “thanks € 5 in Penneys mentality 😉 )
Does any of the above sound like something you battle with it ? Any tips or advice you would like to share ?