Do you ever feel like you shouldn’t deserve credit for your accomplishments? You may have worked very hard to reach some specific goal in your life. You may consistently enjoy a high level of production and are known as the “go to” guy or gal when results matter. Even though, for whatever reason, you feel like a fake or impostor, and you constantly suffer the unrealistic fear that you will be “found out”, with dire consequences following.
This is known as impostor syndrome. It is sometimes referred to as impostor phenomenon or fraud syndrome. The term was developed by psychologists Dr. Pauline R. Clance and Suzanne A. Imes. They noticed a significant number of high-achieving individuals could not give themselves proper credit for their hard-fought accomplishments.
People struggling with fraud syndrome have a persistent fear of being viewed as a fraud, faker, an impostor when in almost every situation they worked hard for and deserved their achievements. If you have a hard time giving yourself credit for the things you achieve, practice the following tips to overcome impostor syndrome, enjoying the credit that is rightfully yours.
1. Don’t blame yourself for opportunities you’ve been given. Just because you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth, or got a job because you knew someone important, doesn’t mean you don’t work hard and deserve credit.
2. Keep a success file. Record every occasion where you helped someone succeed. Write down all of your successes, testimonials, and achievements. Refer to them whenever you feel like a fraud.
3. Tell yourself that you are just suffering from imposter syndrome. Sometimes spelling it out, calling your behavior what it is, is all you need to get past it.
4. Remember that failing doesn’t make you a fake. The greatest achievements have come on the heels of failure. Failing or making a mistake does not make you a fraud or impostor.
5. Remember that you have something important to give the world. When you feel like a fraud or impostor, you pull back and don’t try as hard. This is unfair to the world, which needs your unique presence and abilities.
6. Ask yourself this question. Do you want to lie on your deathbed, regretting things you did not do or attempt in your life? Believing that you are a fraud or fake can cause you to take fewer chances, which can lead to regret.
7. Enjoy the realization that nobody really knows what they’re doing. Seriously, even people who are massively successful financially, personally or spiritually are just winging it. We are all trying to get through this thing called life, and we really don’t know what we’re doing.