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Overcoming Imposter Syndrome And Silencing The Inner Critic

Jan 20, 2024

You know when something really good happens to you and then suddenly the accomplishment feels way bigger than who you are in the present moment?

You're overwhelmed by feelings of inadequacy and being straight up out of place. And just one question circulates in your mind- Am I good enough?

Long story short, imposter syndrome hits you right in the face.

But I'm here to tell you that despite what your inner critic might say,  no, you're not a fraud.



Imposter Syndrome insists on hitting after you've done something really amazing. Possibly even something you've been working towards for months and years. It can often be confused as an internal fear of success, but that's a conversation for another day.

Surprisingly, it manifests itself in five different ways.


What are the 5 Types of Imposter Syndrome?


1. The Superhero


The feelings of inadequacy can really get to Superheroes, compelling them to work harder than ever before and constantly push against their upper limits. Specifically, they compare themselves to friends, family, or colleagues and insist on pushing regardless of the negative effects it may have on their mental, physical, and emotional well-being. This looks like seeking validation from a source outside of yourself- i.e. a boss or significant other.


2. The Perfectionist


Perfectionists set unbelievably high standards for themselves. Success is almost unachievable because they're quick to point out flaws in their work or areas of improvement. Perfectionists are rarely satisfied and ignore their strengths, leading to a great amount of anxiety and self-pressure.


3. The Natural Genius


Like Perfectionists, Natural Geniuses have impossibly high standards. They gage their success on how fast they can grasp new concepts and skills and often feel shame when it takes longer than expected which in more times than not, is right after the first try.


4. The Soloist


Contrary to the Superhero, the Soloist is very independent, so their self-worth stems from their own productivity. Asking for help makes them feel weak and even more so like a fraud, so they avoid it at all costs. Doing so could result in feelings of unworthiness and shame.


5. The Expert


Experts are convinced that they will never know enough, but they try to learn as much as possible and like the other types, sacrifice personal, mental, and physical wellbeing. They often disregard their own knowledge and experience and fear being exposed as inexperienced or unknowledgeable in front of others, specifically partners or colleagues.


So How Can You Work On Overcoming Imposter Syndrome?


There are multiple plans of action including addressing your own feelings of self-doubt, stopping the comparison of yourself to others, investing in some great personal development tools to remember who you are, and remembering it's natural for high achievers.

These next two tips I have found to be the most effective in dealing with my own Imposter Syndrome.


Step 1: Remind yourself who you are


This comes in many forms including affirmations and journaling to name a few. Try amending this by affirming yourself and your hard work and benchmarking your progress. Another way is to set achievable KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) and allow yourself to celebrate once they are achieved.

I saw a video on TikTok where they made a jar of accomplishments by writing down every time they did something noteworthy or hit a goal, so when Imposter Syndrome creeps in, they can remind themselves how great they are through the jar of notes.

It's much easier to see how great you are if you can recognize how far you've come.


Step 2: Give up on Perfect


We're human, and we all make mistakes. But giving yourself the room to make mistakes and be human is what makes the difference in overcoming imposter syndrome. That change in mindset is what will set you up for success and change how you view your life and situations.

The relationship you have with yourself is the most important one you will ever have in your life, so don't sabotage it with unrealistic expectations and instead, be gentle and forgiving. You may think your accomplishments all boil down to one thing...pure luck.

The reality is, if you've achieved this success once, that means it is within you to achieve it again and again. You will literally have the same results every time because of the quality of work you produce.


My last words about overcoming imposter syndrome to you: 

All the greats ranging from Maya Angelou to Einstein had imposter syndrome, so when it inevitably does creep up, I guess you can think of it as being in good company and even more evidence that the inner critic is a liar.


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