4 Top Tips on Dealing with Imposter Syndrome

The phrase ‘Imposter Syndrome’ has been spreading across social media, especially LinkedIn in the last few months.

Imposter Syndrome is the feeling of being inadequate at your job or that you’ll be ‘found out’ for not being good enough despite your skills and successes. 1 in 20 people experience imposter syndrome on a daily basis, and it can happen at any stage of your career. Whether you are still on your probationary period or have recently been given a promotion, all kinds of twists and turns in your career can cause you to feel like a bit of an imposter. 

A member of our delivery team Glynis Osbourne, who is a licensed Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) Trainer and Performance coach with over a decade of blue chip experience, has given her top tips on dealing with imposter syndrome:


  1. Encourage Feedback 

Be brave and ask for feedback. When we are only using our own opinions to form our version of reality or how well we are doing, our brain can sometimes distort our thoughts. By asking questions of others (leaders and colleagues) like, How did I do? Was the information I sent exactly what you needed? What could I do better? can give you information you may not have considered. Remember not to ask leading questions and if there are some constructive comments, take them and use them to get better, don’t dwell and see them as negative. A good habit is giving feedback to others. When others do well let them know, and if you spot something they could change to be even better, be confident, and share your thoughts.


  1. Use The Facts 

Often we forget about what we are doing well and focus on the things we think we aren’t. Using a daily diary to log any success you have, can be very useful, especially when you have those “doubt me” moments. Looking back on what you have achieved, this week or within a specific piece of work can really help.


  1. Quiet The Self-Critical Talk 

Being aware of what we say to ourselves is a useful skill.  When we experience Imposter syndrome, we listen to all of the criticism we give ourselves and this overrides any positive things we might say. Recognise when we are critical and change the tone of the voice (to a nicer voice) and the focus from negative to positive or constructive can help. Ask yourself “what about the good things or the things I can learn?” this is not about making everything overly positive all the time, we need to be realistic but remember not to make things worse than they actually are.


  1. Let It Be 

How many times does someone give praise or say we did well, and we say, “yeah but….”? followed by a reason that dilutes what they have said. Next time this happens, give it a moment, and let the thing that someone has said, sink in and take notice.  They have taken the time to give you some praise or feedback and they deserve to be heard.

If you would like to know more about imposter syndrome, or think your company could benefit from one of our imposter syndrome webinars then please get in touch!

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