Are you suffering from Imposter Syndrome?

I keep reading everywhere that ‘this year is the year of the Entrepreneur’ and if it is then that’s fantastic news.  I love working with new businesses as they very rarely have the bad habits and crushing politics that established corporates can have so I’m very happy about it all.  However, if it’s the year of the entrepreneur then it’s surely also the year that everyone talks about Imposter Syndrome as where there’s a budding entrepreneur there’s almost certainly someone suffering from Imposter Syndrome.

Wikipedia describes Imposter Syndrome as “a psychological phenomenon in which people are unable to internalize their accomplishments. Despite external evidence of their competence, those with the syndrome remain convinced that they are frauds and do not deserve the success they have achieved. Proof of success is dismissed as luck, timing, or as a result of deceiving others into thinking they are more intelligent and competent than they believe themselves to be”.

Make sense?  Sound familiar??  I would imagine to a huge amount of people it does so the big question here is: how do you overcome it?  It’s a matter of putting things in perspective.  I don’t think there’s a prescribed answer but there’s a lot of great advice out there when you search for it.  In fact I think the best advice I can give you on this is to definitely do a search on it see what comes up because, not only will you find some excellent articles and recommendations on how to deal with it, you’ll also see that there are literally thousands and thousands of people all feeling the same way, all worried that they’ll get found out too for no reason whatsoever.  If that doesn’t help you get some perspective and see that there’s nothing to fear and you’re fab at what you do I don’t know what will.

I’d welcome advice and links on this subject as it affects so many of us so – all comments greatly appreciated!


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One Reply to “Are you suffering from Imposter Syndrome?”

  1. Interesting article Sarah but I guess many are going to overlook it due to the mouthful in the title!

    In plain English, the main problem described as ‘Imposter Syndrome’ is confidence or, more specifically, lack of self-confidence. Lots of entrepreneurs are at risk of undervaluing their achievements as these are normally the results of their expertise, experience, or knowledge and have therefore come quite easily. This doesn’t mean they are of low worth.

    The key here is to understand that you only have to know a little more (about your specialist subject) than your client to have something of value. After searching for ‘Imposter Syndrome’ I’d also suggest looking for tips on self-confidence and self-belief – also don’t be afraid to seek out a business coach as sometimes it takes an outsider to see what you can’t see in yourself.

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