• Don't think you're up to your job? Can't take praise? Karen Meager and John McLachlan, co-founders of  Monkey Puzzle Training and two of only a handful of Neuro Linguistic Programming Master Trainers in the UK, are here to help.

    Don't think you're up to your job? Can't take praise? Karen Meager and John McLachlan, co-founders of Monkey Puzzle Training and two of only a handful of Neuro Linguistic Programming Master Trainers in the UK, are here to help.

  • KNOW YOUR ENEMY:  Imposter syndrome is a term coined by psychologists Suzanne Imes and Rose Clance to describe people who are good achievers, but who feel and express doubt or outright denial about their own talents and success. They feel that they are a fraud in what they do and that it is only a matter of time before those around them expose this.

    KNOW YOUR ENEMY: Imposter syndrome is a term coined by psychologists Suzanne Imes and Rose Clance to describe people who are good achievers, but who feel and express doubt or outright denial about their own talents and success. They feel that they are a fraud in what they do and that it is only a matter of time before those around them expose this.

  • WATCH HOW YOU TALK ABOUT YOURSELF:  When achievement makes a person feel like an imposter, they pull out all the stops to deny their successes – they consider it accidental, put it down to luck, or being in the right place at the right time, or having the help of others. Whatever they do, they simply cannot feel comfortable accepting praise from others or giving it to themselves.

    WATCH HOW YOU TALK ABOUT YOURSELF: When achievement makes a person feel like an imposter, they pull out all the stops to deny their successes – they consider it accidental, put it down to luck, or being in the right place at the right time, or having the help of others. Whatever they do, they simply cannot feel comfortable accepting praise from others or giving it to themselves.

  • REMEMBER YOU’RE NOT ALONE:  Research has found that around 70% of people experience the effects of Imposter Syndrome within their lifetime. This indicates that rather than being something out of the ordinary, these feelings of fraud are a natural human condition.

    REMEMBER YOU’RE NOT ALONE: Research has found that around 70% of people experience the effects of Imposter Syndrome within their lifetime. This indicates that rather than being something out of the ordinary, these feelings of fraud are a natural human condition.

  • ARE YOU A PERFECTIONIST?  Perfectionists tend to struggle with Imposter Syndrome because they are rarely satisfied with their achievements. It’s important to remember that you don’t have to be perfect to be a person of value. Start thinking about all you have learned from your mistakes, and try to be kinder to yourself.

    ARE YOU A PERFECTIONIST? Perfectionists tend to struggle with Imposter Syndrome because they are rarely satisfied with their achievements. It’s important to remember that you don’t have to be perfect to be a person of value. Start thinking about all you have learned from your mistakes, and try to be kinder to yourself.

  • FAKE IT TILL YOU MAKE IT:  Even if you don’t feel worthy, keep saying ‘yes’ to opportunities, and push yourself forward in your career. Positive actions can create better emotions.

    FAKE IT TILL YOU MAKE IT: Even if you don’t feel worthy, keep saying ‘yes’ to opportunities, and push yourself forward in your career. Positive actions can create better emotions.

  • CREATE A BELIEVABLE MANTRA:  People with imposter syndrome are consumed by habitual thinking, stuck in thought patterns that continually repel any positivity or praise. The first important step to overcome this habit is to start looking out for truths that cannot be argued with, no matter how much you doubt yourself, and position them as motivational mantras. This mantra should reflect positively on you, while being firmly based in truth.

    CREATE A BELIEVABLE MANTRA: People with imposter syndrome are consumed by habitual thinking, stuck in thought patterns that continually repel any positivity or praise. The first important step to overcome this habit is to start looking out for truths that cannot be argued with, no matter how much you doubt yourself, and position them as motivational mantras. This mantra should reflect positively on you, while being firmly based in truth.

  • SUCH AS…  •  I am doing this to the best of my ability
•  My contributions make a difference to other people
•  I am a hardworking person
•  If I weren’t here, my absence would be keenly felt

    SUCH AS… • I am doing this to the best of my ability • My contributions make a difference to other people • I am a hardworking person • If I weren’t here, my absence would be keenly felt

  • STAY OBJECTIVE:  Steer away from emotional ideas that rely on ‘good’ and ‘bad’ or ‘strong’ and ‘weak’, as these concepts always come back to opinion, and therefore can be easily disputed by a person who is already firmly in the habit of rejecting any compliments.

    STAY OBJECTIVE: Steer away from emotional ideas that rely on ‘good’ and ‘bad’ or ‘strong’ and ‘weak’, as these concepts always come back to opinion, and therefore can be easily disputed by a person who is already firmly in the habit of rejecting any compliments.

  • SCRUTINISE YOUR PERFORMANCE:  Emphasis must be on grounding feedback in reality and approaching it in the most objective way possible. The impact of Imposter Syndrome will only start to subside once you begin to readjust your mind to accepting ideas that it doesn’t necessarily agree with.

    SCRUTINISE YOUR PERFORMANCE: Emphasis must be on grounding feedback in reality and approaching it in the most objective way possible. The impact of Imposter Syndrome will only start to subside once you begin to readjust your mind to accepting ideas that it doesn’t necessarily agree with.

  • SUCH AS…  •  What did you do well?
•  What about your performance would you change for better results next time?
•  How objectively did you assess your performance, and what about the way you judge yourself would you begin to adjust?

    SUCH AS… • What did you do well? • What about your performance would you change for better results next time? • How objectively did you assess your performance, and what about the way you judge yourself would you begin to adjust?

  • START WITH THE THINGS YOU ARE MOST INSECURE ABOUT:  If a particular area of your life is the subject of negative emotions then address that first, but the best results can often be reached when self-appraising behaviour in a variety of situations.

    START WITH THE THINGS YOU ARE MOST INSECURE ABOUT: If a particular area of your life is the subject of negative emotions then address that first, but the best results can often be reached when self-appraising behaviour in a variety of situations.

  • DON’T COMPARE YOURSELF TO OTHERS:  Focus on giving your best every day, without comparing yourself to other people. No two individuals can walk the same path.

    DON’T COMPARE YOURSELF TO OTHERS: Focus on giving your best every day, without comparing yourself to other people. No two individuals can walk the same path.

  • KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK:  Of course, a lifetime of mental habit is not going to be broken overnight, and there is no quick fix for the symptoms of imposter syndrome. But it’s essential to get into a routine of working against negative thoughts and immediate rebuffal of praise from others.
It is all about slowly adjusting the way you see things, step by step, to reach a point where even the most dismissive of us will come around to seeing that the world is not that binary - and neither is your own performance.

    KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK: Of course, a lifetime of mental habit is not going to be broken overnight, and there is no quick fix for the symptoms of imposter syndrome. But it’s essential to get into a routine of working against negative thoughts and immediate rebuffal of praise from others. It is all about slowly adjusting the way you see things, step by step, to reach a point where even the most dismissive of us will come around to seeing that the world is not that binary - and neither is your own performance.

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13 ways to beat imposter syndrome into submission

by Karen Meager and John McLachlan
Last Updated: 04 Apr 2018

Images: Shutterstock

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