How To Overcome Impostor Syndrome In Three Simple Steps

exercises holistic wellness Nov 27, 2022

Have you ever felt like an impostor? I have, and I know exactly how this can prevent us from confidently going for opportunities that can take our careers and businesses to the next level. Not only does impostor syndrome impact our self-belief, but it blocks our authentic self-expression. Irrespective of whether you are looking to start a side hustle, launch a business or grow your existing entrepreneurial venture, impostor syndrome is something you can experience at every stage of your journey and despite your past accomplishments. If you consistently doubt yourself and procrastinate on taking action towards your vision because you think “you aren’t good enough (yet)" or you keep asking yourself "who am I to do this?", it is time that you change that narrative – consciously. There are three simple steps that you can take to snap out of “impostor thinking” every time your inner self-doubter kicks in.

Step 1: Remind yourself that you do not need to believe everything you think

The fact that you may think you are not an expert at something or good enough “yet” to act on and achieve your aspirations does not mean these thoughts are true. You don’t have to believe them and allow them to lead to inaction. By reminding yourself that you do not need to believe what you are thinking when thoughts of self-doubt appear, you are taking conscious control of your thoughts, and it would be easier for you to change them. You can use statements such as "I do not need to believe this" or "this is not true". You can even add a bit of humour by saying to yourself: "here we go again, my impostor is back. I am not going to listen to you."

Step 2: Question and challenge your self-talk

Another effective technique you can also use is challenging the validity of your thoughts. Are they really true? If they aren’t true, why aren’t they true? What evidence can you think of that shows you they are false? You can write all the reasons why these thoughts are simply not true and give your mind evidence that you can do this. A simple shift in perspective can help you regain confidence in your abilities. It is worth remembering that your ego mind will often push forward thoughts of doubt so that it can stop you from putting yourself in danger. Its job is to protect you from pain and disappointment, and when it starts to give you all the reasons why you can’t or shouldn’t do something, it is because it does not want you to expose yourself to situations that can cause unwanted emotions. 

Step 3: Embody your Future Self identity in your thoughts, words and actions

Visualisation is a powerful tool that can help you to mentally and emotionally pre-live the experiences that the version of you who has already achieved your dreams would be living. If you had already realised your aspirations, how would you be living? What would you be doing? How would you be feeling? When you clearly picture yourself having these experiences, you embody your future self energetically. Although your vision is still a mental construct, the picture of its realisation can become a magnet that draws in the right connections and opportunities. This exercise will help you feel more confident and less of an impostor. You can allocate 15 minutes a day to it and, straight after you have finished, map out three actions you will take that align with your vision.

Takeaway: Your mind is a tool that is there to serve and not sabotage you 

Next time impostor syndrome kicks in, you can use the above steps to guide your mind and let it serve you

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