I suffer from Imposter Syndrome! Do you?

 Sanjay Basu

Have you ever had Impostor Syndrome? If you don’t know or aren’t sure, you could’ve missed framing whatever was happening to you into a definition. Impostor Syndrome can throw one down a vicious cycle of self-doubt and make one stressed about minor things. Being rejected, fired, or ridiculed once can turn your perception of yourself and the environment around you upside down. 

The typical signs are self-doubting your own accomplishments and skills and fearing that you might be exposed as fraud without being such. These feelings are most common when entering a new environment, such as starting college, receiving a career promotion, or starting an internship at a large corporation.


Imagine being laid off with 70% of your company’s employees. What made the other 30% better than you? Why do they get to keep their jobs, and you don’t? Even the strongest minds can be affected by the unexpected turn of events.


Yet, there is a benefit to this. If you are in so much doubt, you get to over-prepare for everything since you don’t really believe that you’ve “got it”. Sometimes people of status, degrees, and previous experience fail when others, who have nothing of the sort, save for better preparation, succeed. These have often been victims of the impostor phenomenon, making them work harder to get what they deserve. Because how can others believe in you if you don’t believe in yourself?


If you’re fighting with self-doubt, there’s a cool trick I want to share with you. You can easily defeat feelings of doubt, and you probably have done it at least once today.


When you think or hear someone say that a task is too hard, speak these magical words:



If you think that something would cause you embarrassment.


If a project is too much work, and a failure would cost you a lot in your mind.



Because in the end, whatever you are doing, you are doing it for yourself. Whether people are watching and judging or not doesn’t matter at all. The only thing that can stop you from trying is you. Don’t!


If you feel like you can’t convince yourself that you are good enough, try speaking to someone close to you. Talk about it, and be honest about your own convictions. The most successful people on the planet similarly get these feelings from time to time, and that means something. If there’s a friend, relative, counselor, or colleague that you can trust, share your thoughts with them.


So, if you identify yourself with any of these symptoms, here are five rules you can follow to eradicate the doubts in your mind:


  1. Remember your roots.

Think about how long you’ve worked to get where you are. Reflect on all the hours of research, hard work, and everything you’ve gone through. Are you really non-deserving? Of course, not.


  1. Establish a support system.

Seek guidance from a close relative or friend. The person you choose doesn’t need to have gone through the same process. They just need to help you analyze your own thoughts.


  1. Set up SMART goals.

More importantly, let all of these goals be realistic, attainable, and measurable so that you often get that satisfaction from achieving something. Celebrate after each goal.


  1. Working hard isn’t bad.

If you are piled up on a project, don’t talk yourself out of work because you’re missing a social event. Yes, work-life balance is important, but whatever you choose to do, you shouldn’t force yourself to feel guilty about it.


  1. Remain yourself.

Don’t cheat on your personal values to feel better. It will only improve things in the short term.


Follow these guidelines if you ever experience feelings of self-doubt. Remember, whatever gets thrown at you, “I DON’T CARE” is the attitude that frees your mind from trouble and allows you to exhibit your full potential.


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