Supporting Wellbeing at Work: Addressing Imposter Syndrome

This month, we’ve been sharing content related to promoting wellbeing. One way to promote emotional wellbeing is to raise awareness of imposter syndrome in our work lives.

Imposter syndrome occurs when an individual doubts their skills, talents, or accomplishments despite genuine success. Many people who experience imposter syndrome feel like fakes or phonies and that their achievements are based on good fortune or timing instead of their own effort and hard work.

Imposter Syndrome can significantly impact how we perceive our work, self-worth, and social interactions with colleagues and peers. A study found that 75% of female executives surveyed reported experiencing imposter syndrome. 53% of female professionals between the ages of 25-34 are currently experiencing imposter syndrome. And it affects not only our work lives but also our personal lives and relationships. 70% of adults will experience feelings of imposter syndrome at some point in their lifetime.

We can overcome imposter syndrome by understanding its prevalence, cultivating compassion for ourselves and others, and sharing our experiences to raise awareness.

Here are a few ways you can address imposter syndrome:

Acknowledge it: Many successful people struggle with imposter syndrome. You are not alone. Recognizing and sharing your feelings with others helps normalize it.

Challenge Negative Thoughts: When you start to experience self-doubt, ask yourself whether these thoughts are valid. Are they rooted in evidence?

Practice Compassion: Be kind to yourself. Everyone has setbacks, but it doesn’t define you.

View Criticism as an Opportunity for Growth: Many people who experience imposter syndrome are perfectionists. Understand perfection is unattainable, and when you receive feedback, it’s an opportunity for growth and improvement.

Track Achievements and Celebrate Progress: Keep a record of praise and accomplishments. When you are experiencing self-doubt, reflect on these achievements and praise. Reward yourself whenever you combat those feelings of self-doubt and realize that progress proves your hard work.

Sources: PR Newswire and Forbes