Professionals & Imposter Syndrome
You just don’t measure up. Everyone knows you aren’t qualified for this position. Your proposal will be a laughingstock!
Do any of these insults match what your inner critic says on a daily basis? If someone outside of your own head said these kinds of things to you, you’d (hopefully) dismiss them from your life.
Far too many people these days engage in this type of destructive inner dialogue. In fact, 7 out of 10 people experience what is called ‘imposter syndrome.’ Imposter Syndrome is a faulty belief system where an individual constantly doubts their own abilities despite external evidence that points to the contrary. And in my experience, this happens all-to-often with highly knowledgeable and skilled professionals.
If you can relate, don’t feel bad. Albert Einstein himself once admitted to feeling “ill at ease” with the esteem his lifework was held. He actually called himself an “involuntary swindler!”
Einstein’s own internal doubt points to a common paradox: those who suffer from imposter syndrome tend to be individuals who are high achieving, with academics being particularly susceptible, according to data.
Imposter Syndrome and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Imposter syndrome can significantly affect job performance (a self-fulfilling prophecy) and has been linked to anxiety and depression. If you suffer from this syndrome, what can you do to cope?
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) has been shown to help individuals suffering from this syndrome. CBT is a powerful modality that dismantles negative thought patterns and behaviors. CBT essentially challenges the person’s perceptions of their own abilities and helps them to construct newer, healthier ones.
Imposter syndrome robs an individual of their confidence and joy and can ultimately hold them back from reaching their true potential. The best way to combat imposter syndrome is to talk about it with a licensed therapist trained in cognitive behavioral therapy.
If you’d like to explore treatment options, please reach out to me. I would be more than happy to discuss how I may be able to help.