Wearing A Mask
What do you call a phenomenon that affects approx 7/10 people and has no bearing on…
- Age groups or occupation
Affects the likes of…
- Albert Einstein
- Tom Hanks
- David Bowie
- Natalie Portman
- Starbucks’ (CEO) Howard Schultz
- lady GaGa
- Emma Watson
- Feelings of being less capable than the surrounding people
- Feeling of getting away with something, or a feeling of being well out of your depth, yet already entrenched into the situation
- Feelings that you are a fraud or a fake
- Or thoughts of “sooner or later my ability to continue this charade will be exposed” and I will have it all taken away
The phenomenon that affects the seventy percentile is called…
Imposter Experience Or Syndrome
In 1978, physiologist’s Dr. Suzanne Imes and Dr. Pauline Rose Clance observed this trait amongst high achieving women who questioned their intelligence and thus were not able to accept their success.
How do you end up dealing with the Imposter Syndrome?
To call it a syndrome would downplay how universal it is for it is NOT a disease or abnormality, and it is not necessarily tied to…
- Or self-esteem
Diligently works hard, sacrifices invest in education, puts in countless time and hours focused on adding value to get some movement in their careers.
They are working to eventually get acknowledgment for their contributions likely in forms of traffic, rankings in the search engines, or authority in their space.
But always a part of them feels that…
- They do not deserve it
- They are “faking it till they make it”
- They have an unwarranted sense of insecurity
I see so many folks come and dip their toes in the affiliate marketing pool get started, excited, moving along and then that feeling of fraudulence creeps in and like so many aspiring online entrepreneurs… they shut down.
The fear is common among entrepreneurs in general and especially, online professionals.
As a starting digital pro, NO ONE in the online world starts off being an authority in anything, it’s built on daily until eventually acquired.
Certain feelings of fraudulence will inevitably rear its ugly self and it is at this point when the entrepreneur must push aside those imposter feelings, dive into their work with focus, otherwise their digital career will certainly be cut short.
The Root Of Imposter Syndrome
An unrealistic picture of what other people are really like.
We feel like impostors not because we are uniquely flawed, but because we fail to imagine how deeply flawed everyone also is beneath their more or less polished surface. (For example, this was prevalent in the monarchy type of cultures but are currently in organizations with leaders with titles and/or prestigious positions).
Does Having a Specific Level of Skill Make a Difference
People who are highly skilled or accomplished tend to think that others are as skilled as they are. This can spiral into feeling that they do not deserve accolades or opportunities over other people.
Intense feelings of impostorism can prevent the sharing of great ideas or apply for jobs that they could EXCEL at.
Albert Einstein, arguably one of the most brilliant minds, once was quoted that he describes himself as an “Involuntary swindler” whose work didn’t deserve as much attention as it had received.
Based on the likes of Albert Einstein and or David Bowie, there often does not seem to be a threshold of accomplishment that can put these feelings to rest.
There is no easy way to dismiss feelings that we are less capable than the surrounding people.
Where Are You In This Group
Do you feel like you relate to the traits of the imposter phenomenon? If so, then you have experienced Imposter syndrome as well.
Imposter syndrome anxiety…
Are you… accomplishing something you felt you did not deserve?
Or, you become so paranoid that you hide behind a mask in fear of someone realizing that you are indeed a fraud.
Even when positive feedback is received, it often fails to ease the feelings of fraudulence.
When we doubt ourselves privately and do not realize that we are not alone thinking that way because no one else voices their doubts.
How could we really…
Tough to know, when you are distance working (ie from a home office) especially if you do not know…
- How hard our peers work
- How difficult they find certain tasks, or
- How much they doubt themselves in private
In the online world, much of what we do is solitary in nature. At times we are our only sounding board. We do not have that yardstick of thought available to share or even observe that others are just as flawed.
There is no easy way to dismiss feelings that we lack the ability to achieve, are less knowledgeable, or not deserving even though we are tirelessly striving to create a successful product.
According to Physiologist’s Dr. Suzanne Imes and Dr. Pauline Rose Clance
Helps the person know that they are not alone in dealing with the imposter phenomenon and can discuss it amongst themselves and feel safe in the exchange.
If you are working as a keyboard warrior, it is key to connect to open forums and see how others are dealing with the same issues.
Reflect when they hear another person’s story and the lack of reality in their rationale.
Compare it to your own experience, you will absolutely find correlation and solace in the fact that you are not alone and others around you experience the same thoughts.
Recognize these imposter ‘Esq‘ feelings, acknowledge them for what they are, then you can push them aside no longer being afraid of being exposed as a fake.
You can be confident that you are not an imposter.
Nothing New Under The Sun
You can see by this research that you are not alone in these feelings.
When you realize that we are all the same and have the same challenges, the road ahead becomes easier to travel, when you realize that everyone is the same as you.
The next time you start to feel like an imposter take comfort in the knowledge that you are a work in progress and there is no such thing as perfection.
Up to this point, the surest way to combat impostorism is to talk about it (Join forums.)
Everyone is trying to figure it out, a lot of “fake it until you make it” and finding out a term for these feelings can be an incredible relief.
Once you address this phenomenon, you can combat your own Imposter syndrome by collecting and revisiting your own positive feedback.
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Take The Mask OFF
Of feelings that you are a fraud or a fake
“Fake it til you make it” does have its merit in every profession on some level but understand…
“Making it” will never happen until you come to terms with understanding what this actually is.
To exactly where you are and where you are going. Focus on progress and not perfection.
From what the noise around you “social media, TV etc.
To who you are. You have talent, you are capable, and you belong especially in the online space.
Honesty and originality are the new currency.
Do Not Compare Yourself To Others
The truth is…
The experience that you bring to the opportunity which you are presented with is unique to you.
Simply you are capable.
When you drop your fear you will actually then succeed.
7 Tips For Overcoming The Imposter Experience
1) Set benchmarks; and review the progress regularly look back over your past work to see how far you have come, also if we can remember the challenges that we had to cross to get where we are today.
2) Write Goals; Do not just think it, ink it, psychologists have proven that we become more committed to what we write down versus what we say.
3) Affirmations; Memorize a few that are powerful and you can use to anchor your emotions when they start to falter.
4) Self Talk; Your Internal dialogue influences you to focus, on feelings and ultimately behaviours.
5) Positive Reinforcement; Give yourself “wins” throughout your day “everything counts.”
6) Read Empowering literature; Learn and feed your paradigm. Educate yourself for this is truly the purest form of growth.
7) Have Open and Honest Discussion with others…
The Thing Is- You Are Not A Minority
We may never be able to banish these feelings entirely, but we can have an open conversation about academic or professional challenges.
Recognize them for yourself and your environment around you both professionally and personally.
By simply increasing the awareness of how common these experiences are and how you can help your own feelings of Imposter perhaps we can feel freer and build confidence in some simple truths.
Enjoy This Article
You might also get some value from my blog on Ageism.
As always do not hesitate to leave me your questions or comments will get back to you in a timely fashion.
Thanks for the moment.
Featured image courtesy of Stefan Keller from Pixabay
This post was proofread by Grammarly