The syndrome is one that I have been aware of before and have struggled with myself in the past so I know from personal experience what it takes to deal with it.
Despite studying anxiety and psychology extensively, I still occasionally catch my negative thoughts saying "why on earth would people listen to you?".
Not what you need when you are about to hit the stage!!
What is Impostor Syndrome?
Put simply it is the overriding feeling that you have achieved where you are by luck and could be found out at any moment as a fraud.
This can be in the work place, as a parent or even as a student.
It was originally thought that women were more affected than men however, more recent studies have found that gender doesn't have any impact on how likely an individual is to develop it.
As such a wide range of people struggle with impostor syndrome, believing that their accomplishments are not down to their own successes in life.
Do I have Impostor Syndrome?
How do you know if you have impostor syndrome? Most people know intuitively as they genuinely feel like an impostor in the situations that are problematic.
They suffer constant anxiety that the people around them will realise that they aren't actually that gifted or capable and that they will be exposed.
If you are not sure however, there is in fact a test: Find out if you have impostor syndrome here: https://testyourself.psychtests.com/testid/3803
So what can we do about it?
When we consider the types of thoughts and beliefs that a person with Impostor Syndrome has, we are able to take a cognitive behavioural approach to its treatment.
People often think things like:
And the list goes on or differs depending on the individual.
When we consider that negative thoughts lead to negative feelings which result in certain actions, it becomes clear that challenging those thoughts and beliefs is the way forward.
This is the basis of cognitive behavioural therapy, that we challenge the negative thoughts that are leading to the feelings we don't want.
I take clients through the following process:
Take control of Impostor Syndrome
Find out what negative thoughts are contributing to your Impostor Syndrome with a FREE worksheet on cognitive distortions. Just head here and enter your details for your sheet to download and explanation video.
The way we think has a huge impact on our mental health. If you are looking to overcome your anxiety or just improve your mental health then first you need to know what thoughts are making things worse.
This download gives you a list of the most common ways we think negatively. All you need to do is see which ones you do most.
Also, keep an eye on your emails! I will be sending you a really useful video that goes with this exercise.