Don’t Let Imposter Syndrome Derail Your Success
58% of tech workers for companies like Amazon and Google experience Imposter Syndrome.
Imposter syndrome is when you feel like a total fraud as a professional.
As mentioned above, current research shows that 58% of tech workers for companies like Amazon and Google experience imposter syndrome. Even more noteworthy, 84% of entrepreneurs experience imposter syndrome — that your success is a result of luck and you don’t deserve it.
It’s the same character traits that drive entrepreneurs and business leaders — intelligence, drive, an analytic nature, high cognitive ability, and self-awareness — that can lead to an oversized focus on flaws, mistakes and failures.
While we all experience feelings of self-doubt at times, when those feelings lead you to doubt your proven abilities and successes, self-sabotage and feelings of isolation can follow.
It’s worth noting that Imposter Syndrome may have one advantage. An MIT Sloane study found that those people who confessed to the syndrome were more “other focused” in social interactions, leading to more effective interpersonal relations.
For entrepreneurs, who rely so heavily on their own ideas, ambitions and decisions, continually second guessing their business sense may not sink their business but it can affect its success and their own mental well-being.
Entrepreneurs are not alone in experiencing Imposter Syndrome. A new role, a promotion, or new responsibilities all can prompt these feelings, if they weren’t already there beforehand.
While Imposter Syndrome is not classified as a mental health disorder, there are strategies to overcome it. They call for self-awareness and mindfulness.
5 Strategies to Overcome Imposter Syndrome
1. Name Your Feelings.
When you notice yourself experiencing Imposter Syndrome, write down or say out loud what you’re feeling. Acknowledging them as Imposter Syndrome takes away their power over your emotions.
2. List the Real Data.
Gather all the facts about your qualifications and your achievements and write them down in list form. Then, when you’re feeling Imposter Syndrome, read your list to remind yourself that yes, you do deserve success and the opportunity to work towards it.
3. Create a Mantra.
Choose a word or phrase that counters Imposter Syndrome feelings. Then, when you first start feeling them, counter with your mantra. Your mantra should be simple, like “I am good enough.” or “I deserve success.”
4. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others.
If you struggle with Imposter Syndrome, one of the most harmful behaviors is using the accomplishments or lives of others to measure yourself against. While there will always be people who have achieved more, what real bearing does that have on your own pathway?
Your entrepreneurial journey belongs to you, so don’t evaluate yourself based on someone else’s model.
5. Celebrate Your Successes (No Matter How Small).
Every victory is a success, and small wins give momentum for bigger wins down the road. So make sure you give yourself the recognition — and express gratitude — you deserve for each achievement you reach.
Boost Midwest knows that every entrepreneur’s journey is unique. What’s often most important is having an entrepreneurial mindset. Here, recognizing and managing Imposter Syndrome can be a big step forward.