Is it Bad Enough to Be Imposter Syndrome?

imposter syndrome

Currently, I’m in a space where I’m losing confidence in my abilities. It happens every now and then when everything just feels too much. It doesn’t feel like imposter syndrome. That seems too big of a word for what I’m feeling.

Essentially, I’m feeling like an imposter for thinking I might be experiencing imposter syndrome.

Even though this sounds ridiculous when you read it from a logical perspective, that’s exactly how it feels. I don’t feel like I’m in a place in my career (as an SEO Specialist) where I am important enough for me to be an imposter. But recently, I started teaching yoga and that really threw things into perspective.

What is Imposter Syndrome?

Imposter syndrome is basically losing faith in yourself and your abilities. You feel like an imposter, someone who is pretending to be something they’re not. And it’s not uncommon. CEOs of massive companies feel like imposters sometimes. In fact, many high-achieving people feel like imposters. They struggle to accept their accomplishments.

I’ve met a CFO in a law firm that felt like he was ‘pretending’ to be someone he wasn’t. Who he saw himself as in his mind and where he was in his career didn’t correlate. He was in a place where he was responsible for a massive team, and everyone was coming to him for advice. And sometimes, he didn’t know the answers.

feeling like an imposter

It’s okay not to know the answers. It’s impossible for us to know everything. Instead of getting stuck in our heads about it, we need to focus on learning. Being a leader means you need to be willing to go find those answers out so you’ll know next time. Sometimes just being honest and saying, “I don’t know the answer, but I will find out and let you know”, is far more impactful for an employee than just hearing the answer.

Some days you may feel like an imposter. On other days you might feel like you’re exactly where you’re meant to be.

Anxiety Disorder and Imposter Syndrome

An anxiety disorder comes with a lot of doubt. It’s not uncommon to question things. I never thought I’d be able to do what I’m currently doing because of my anxiety. Feeling anxious already comes with a lot of self-doubt. And often, we anxiety bunnies are also high achievers. This makes people with anxiety disorders the perfect candidates for Imposter Syndrome.

How It Feels

I’m concerned that I have no idea what I am doing in my work currently. The industry I work in changes frequently, and there are some things that I don’t know. There are things I’m doing that I’ve never been trained on. But it is a learning process, and I often forget that. I think we all often forget that we are just learning.

I struggle with understanding that it is okay to feel like I don’t know everything.

I started this blog because I have a passion for helping other people master their anxiety. It actually started out as a book. But then I moved it onto a blog because my job is blogging, so surely I should combine the two?

This might not have been the brilliant idea I thought it was at the time. It made me concerned about numbers, clicks, impressions, position, CTR, and all the stuff that doesn’t really mean anything to my overall intention. If my blog helps one person, I’ve done my job. It doesn’t matter if I reach hundreds.

Now I have topics to write about that I’m not necessarily passionate about. Yes, they are useful, but will they help people? They might, they might not. I work in SEO, so it makes sense to write posts that will be useful to places like Google. But the point of the blog is to help people, so it’s finding that balance that I am struggling with.

It’s okay not to know where you are going. It’s okay to have a plan and then get derailed from that plan and start on a new plan and then remember the old plan and wonder what on earth happened. It’s okay not to be perfect. It’s okay not to be okay. It’s okay to lose confidence.

Conquering Imposter Syndrome

Imposter Syndrome is also paralyzing. It makes you feel helpless and useless. The only way out of it is by taking back your power and changing something. One of the best ways I’ve found to conquer my imposter syndrome, especially when it comes to SEO, is by doing courses.

I usually take a LinkedIn Learning course on SEO and realize I already know what they are talking about. I learn a few new things every now and then, and it’s nice to have a refresher. It helps me remember that I do know what I am doing.

Another way to help with imposter syndrome is by talking to those around you. Try to see yourself through the eyes of other people. It might give you some perspective. You can also try working with the FEAR acronym to unpack what might be behind your imposter syndrome.

Remember everything you have done to get where you are. Those hours you spent studying or the time used to improve yourself. Think about the little things that got you where you are. Look back on your journey and see how you got where you got.

If you feel like things got ‘handed’ to you, think about what you have done that other people didn’t do. Maybe you worked extra hours in the evening, maybe you came up with ideas, maybe you were kind to people. These small things aren’t all that common. And they set you apart.

girl imposter

The Great Pretender

I started this post feeling helpless and frustrated. I now feel overwhelmed and exhausted. Just because I know how to fix my imposter syndrome doesn’t mean that I have the energy or the will to do so. It doesn’t mean I magically feel better or the feelings of self-doubt vanish.

I know what I’m feeling isn’t logical or based on fact, but it is coming from somewhere. And that’s what I need to work on. Figuring out where the feelings come from can be a great way to find out where you’ve got work to do and how to make a shift for the better.

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