What is Imposter Syndrome? Definition and Cause

We all have moments of self-doubt. Sometimes those thoughts come into play when we are feeling insecure about something, or our confidence is down. Imposter syndrome, however tends to be more pervasive. It is defined as a collection of feelings of inadequacy that tend to persist despite evidence of success. In other words, if you often think “Eventually, someone is going to figure out the real me and see me for who I am,” you may have imposter syndrome. It is about the inability to internalize our own success. People who suffer with imposter syndrom tend to have chronic self-doubt and feel intellectually fraudulent.

Imposter syndrome tends to be linked to core beliefs that most likely started in childhood. Often linked to an association of ‘achievement = love,’ coupled with the message that “It was never good enough” can create lasting effect. Comparing children’s success in the home can also contribute. Imposter syndrome can develop in people who tend to have perfectionist traits, who believe they have to accomplish tasks on their own or believe that you must be an ‘expert’ in something to fully be successful. People with imposter syndrome often will work harder than anyone else in the room.

The good news is that it doesn’t have to be this way. Tomorrow’s post will look at step to take if imposter syndrome is taking up too much space in your life 🙂

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Photo credit: http://Photo by Javier Graterol on Unsplash

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