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  • Writer's pictureJudith Paterson

Did you know that 70% of us experience IMPOSTER SYNDROME?!

Updated: Feb 7, 2023


Yes! Studies show that 70% of us will experience imposter syndrome in our life time. You're not alone!


"Imposter syndrome" was first recognized during a study of high performing women conducted by Suzanne Imes and Pauline Rose Clance in the 70's. It is not actually a recognized mental health condition and is alternately referred to as the imposter experience or the imposter phenomenon. Although this experience can affect various areas of our lives (such as parenting), it is very commonly experienced in the workplace.


Imposter experience is the feeling of not deserving our position or the positive accolades we receive, of not really knowing what we're doing or having suitable skills, or worrying about being found out as a fraud. We may attribute our successes to being in the right place at the right time, being solely because we are nice or personable, or because we force ourselves to work twice as hard as everyone else.


The imposter experience in the workplace is most prevalent with new graduates, those who are different than the majority of their peers in some way, such as age, gender, or racial background, and with those who have recently been promoted to more responsible positions.


Left unaddressed, this feeling can snowball and lead to anxiety, depression, and reduced performance and career success.


Below are three tips to help regain balance:


  1. THREE GOOD THINGS - Spend some time each day - perhaps at the end of the day before you pack up and go home - to identify and acknowledge three things you accomplished today - big or small.

  2. EMBRACE POTENTIAL - Recognize that success is not innate. Everyone who is successful makes mistakes (all the time! every day!) and succeeded through trial and error, and practice. If you have been recently hired or promoted, remember that you were hired for your potential to be good at the job. It is unlikely you are expected to immediately have all the answers. It can be helpful to reach out to your manager and discuss expectations and timelines.

  3. SHARE WITH OTHERS - Reach out to a friend or trusted colleague. The best way to stop the imposter gremlin voice in your head is to let it out. It can be a big relief to know that others feel similarly to you. You can even brainstorm ideas together.

Reach out for more information or to book a session. And watch for an imposter syndrome workshop coming in the new year!








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