You feel like you’re a fraud. You’ve successfully completed a large project and received acclaims from many people, but somewhere in your mind says, “I’m not good enough…”
Feeling like a fraud signifies you have an imposter syndrome; a psychological barrier that exists in your mind (only). It robs you from being enough and feeling worthy of your achievements. Imposter syndrome is like a ninja that camouflages itself among behaviors that seem normal to you. This article helps you to identify behaviors — we call it symptoms — of imposter syndrome.
I noticed this in myself when 20 people came to me, asking the same question, “Hey KarFei, you’re doing so great, how can I be like you?” My response was, “What are you talking about? I’m not even there yet. I’m far behind Tony Robbins and Rich Litvin.”
When this question comes to time and again, I begin to wonder, “Is there something that they see but I can’t?”
Even though I’ve been coaching for 10 years, there’s this tiny self-doubt in me that says, “I’m a fraud. I’m just not good enough.” This is the imposter syndrome that affects everyone, including my clients, successful entrepreneurs, top Hollywood celebrities, CEOs, and you.
Imposter Syndrome Hurts
I realized the imposter syndrome has hurt my self-esteem and I couldn’t shine the brightest when I take the stage. My clients didn’t play big because of the voices in their heads. The feeling of “I’m a fraud” tells you that you’re not worthy of your achievements.
Among my clients, I’ve noticed 3 distinct symptoms of imposter syndrome that could help you identify if you have imposter syndrome. If you do, I have 1 simple mantra that I’ve been using to cull the voice that’s hurting you.
- Perfectionist. Someone who is looking for perfection in everything to the point that they stop taking action or couldn’t complete the task.
- Judgemental. You think you’re incompetent even though, in reality, you are. For example, you perceive the project was successful because somebody, your teammates, your manager, the cleaner, make it happen, not you.
- Fearful. People who are scared to take actions because they believe they’re not good enough. This fear paralyzes people even if they’ve done well in the past.
Mantra That Culls The Fraud
This mantra has kept me in check whenever the imposter syndrome creeps in:
Progress over Perfection
Knowing how far you’ve come gives you a massive boost of confidence. Imagine when you first started. You knew nothing, you’re desperate, you’re clumsy, you made mistakes. And now, you’re much more independent, experienced, mature and competent. You may not be there yet, but you’ve definitely moved closer to your goals.
Whenever the imposter syndrome emerges, recite this mantra, “Progress over Perfection.” Take 5 – 10 minutes to reflect on the challenges you’ve overcome, to appreciate yourself for making things happen and to believe acclaims from others.