Impostor Syndrome

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A few months ago I was debuting a brand new keynote. The night before the event, I was hit with what can only be described as a tidal wave of Imposter Syndrome. It came from seemingly out of nowhere, and when it hit, I began a downward spiral of:

“Who do I think I am?”.

“I have no idea what I’m doing!”

“Today is the day everyone will find out I am a fraud!”

“I’m doing it wrong.”

Sound familiar? Yeah, I know.

The truth about Imposter Syndrome is... we all have it.

Luckily, like you, I have been training myself for moments like these. Before the Imposter Syndrome could completely destroy me, I recognized the trigger and called on the tools I have developed for dealing with my Imposter Syndrome. On this particular day, the tool that was most powerful for me was self-talk. “Run towards the bang, Jen!”

When I am feeling stuck, the simple act of conjuring up the voice of my coach Peter, tends to help. I felt the Imposter bearing down on me, and when I asked myself what Peter would say, this is what I heard:

Run towards the bang.

Dance with the Imposter.

This means you are doing it right.

Be audacious.

You see, what I’ve learned is that when I feel like an Imposter, it means that I am experiencing a moment of growth. So rather than run from it, I dance with it. When I feel like an Imposter, I’m usually doing something right. And since that something is bold and new, it is inherently scary. Rather than choosing fear, I choose faith. I reinvest everything I have into whatever audacious act I’m about to commit and run towards the bang.

Imposter, be gone!

What tools do you have for dealing with your Imposter Syndrome?