What is imposter syndrome, and how to overcome it?

This article will discuss imposter syndrome, how to figure out which one you are, find a sense of it all and ways to overcome self-doubt. If you want to know more, join our FREE Masterclass on 24 February.

Are you an imposter?

Imposter syndrome is a feeling, not a fact, initially coined by Pauline Clance, PhD (Clance, 1985).

Clance’s (1985) model of the Imposter Cycle, as depicted in Sakulku & Alexander (2011).

Are you alone in feeling like an imposter?

Image from www.lmfnetwork.com workshop on imposter syndrome

According to recent data, 70% of people feel like an imposter. These feelings sound like fraud, failure, or constantly figuring it out. It’s said that these numbers are higher in women and millennials.

How many kinds of imposters are there?

Image from www.lmfnetwork.com workshop on imposter syndrome

Only a few people are aware, but there are five types of imposters: perfectionist, natural genius, soloist, expert, and superhuman.

You know which one you are within your gut, and through our research, we’ve found that generally, people are nomore than two at any given time. For example, I am a soloist and superhuman, feeling like I can’t ask for help and yet wanting to do everything to prove that I am good enough. It’s imposter syndrome (and the constant feeling of it) that has fuelled me to do as much as I do and take on more work; however, on the flip side, that has encouraged burnout, exhaustion and periods of loss.

Feeling your imposter and finding sense.

I think it takes time to understand your imposter syndrome, its impact, and its effects. This is a journey of self-discovery to overcome doubt. It’s taken me years to fully feel my imposter for what it is, how it shows up and ways to manage it. It sounds like a lot, but this discovery has been freeing in itself and liberating because I know I am not alone and can manage everything around me once I put in the relevant steps. This includes making lists, noting events in my calendars, not over-committing, taking time to read or drink a cup of tea daily, and using my social profiles like a celebration portfolio.

A few simple tasks you can take today include :

  • Reflect on your natural skills, abilities and strengths and compare them to moments of doubt.
  • Create a tracker to write down examples of where you have thrived, skills you have used, what you have learnt and most importantly, the results or celebrations, no matter how small.
  • Ask those around you for honest and welcoming feedback, using questions like “what do you depend on me for” all the way to “what’s a characteristic of mine which you think is the most prominent.” — a suitable method of doing this activity is with a mentor.
  • Make a list of moments which overwhelm or exhaust you on the brink of burnout.
  • Take stock and safe moments for yourself.

Ready to overcome self-doubt and build your confidence?

  • Join our free Masterclass on 24th Feb URL to learn what imposter syndrome is, why it impacts you, which one you are, how to overcome and ways to build your confidence.
  • Build your confidence and community with Like Minded Females (LMF Network)

Given the current state of the professional world and our personal feelings towards the events happening around us, no wonder many of us are feeling like imposters, and self-doubt has spiked. Daily, I receive a message from someone asking me about the feelings associated with imposter syndrome, what can be done to finesse these thoughts and most importantly, how to build back confidence which feels lost. Last night, I delivered a workshop for the Like Minded Females (LMF Network) mentoring programme, which achieved a 100% recommendation rate and last month for companies such as Mitie Rolls-Royce Motor Cars and Bayes Business School. The point is, this is not a solo phenomenon but a feeling that many are feeling — in fact, so many of us feel like imposters that it’s impacting our everyday motives! Our mission at LMF Network is to build careers and confidence, so I can’t stand back and watch you all feel a certain way — let’s work together to overcome the fear, figure out these feelings and build the confidence back up to achieve our version of success!

This blog contribution was made by Sonya Barlow CEO & Founder of LMF Network— a business author, BBC broadcaster and content creator. Sonyabarlow.co.uk & @LMFnetwork

How can you keep in touch?

Email — hello@lmfnetwork.com |LinkedIn |Instagram | Slack

What is LMF Network?

The LMF Network is an education careers platform bridging skills and the gender gap. We know that it will take 257 years to achieve gender parity, but that’s too long. Our community trust us to support their development needs, build their confidence and align ourselves with trusted, inclusive partners who can nurture and grow talent to progress in their careers. We’ve upskilled 20,000 people in 3 years — we know what we are fighting for and need your help in creating true equitable change.

@LMFnetwork Instagram | LinkedIn | Twitter



LMF Network - building the careers & confidence of 25,000 people by 2025 through mentoring, masterclasses & meaningful conversations. www.LMFNetwork.com

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LMF Network - building the careers & confidence of 25,000 people by 2025 through mentoring, masterclasses & meaningful conversations. www.LMFNetwork.com