Have you ever felt like your accomplishments were handed to you on a silver platter?
Are you skeptical when people praise you, secretly believing that they're mocking you? If you've answered yes, you are suffering from Imposter Syndrome.
The good news is that you're not alone. Research shows that 65% of professionals are affected by Imposter Syndrome.
In this article, we'll discuss Imposter Syndrome, how it affects women in Tech, and 4 ways of overcoming it.
But first, let’s walk you through the symptoms
Symptoms of Imposter Syndrome.
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Common signs of Imposter Syndrome include:
- Believing your success is caused by external factors
Highlighting your flaws when complimented.
Not believing that you're good enough.
What makes Imposter Syndrome unique, is that it stems from within. It's not your colleagues or boss that makes you feel underqualified or insufficient, it's your mind that does.
Although external support can go a long way to solving this, Imposter Syndrome can only be fully rectified by a mindset shift.
Why Are Women in Tech Prone to Imposter Syndrome?
Because of the gender misbalance in male-dominated professions such as Tech and Engineering, women in these fields feel the need of working twice as hard as their male counterparts.
To prove to themselves that they deserve to be there.
Some such as full-stack developer, Kate, confess to feeling like they only got the job because the organization was trying to minimize the gender gap.
Impact on the Victim.
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If you're a victim of imposter syndrome, chances are you keep pushing yourself to the max, leading to constant burnouts.
You'll constantly be anxious at work. Not because you hate it, but you're waiting for the ax to fall. You wake up wondering if today is the day your job termination letter will come in, after everyone figures that you're not good enough.
Over time, this anxiety hinders your productivity as you'll be scared of taking risks and if untackled, it leads to depression.
How to Overcome Imposter Syndrome.
Here are 4 ways that will help you overcome Imposter Syndrome.
1. Identify Your Unique Skills and Abilities
Everyone is good at something, no matter how small it may seem. By identifying your strengths, you'll see that you too bring something to the table.
If you have a hard time identifying this, ask a colleague to help you.
2. Chose Progress Over Perfection.
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Seeking perfection is a downhill battle. You won't get anything done and even if you do, you'll be bypassing deadlines.
Instead, shift your focus from perfection to progress. Take note of each seemingly tiny accomplishment you make and be proud of yourself.
Actively practice this and you'll notice that you'll stop beating yourself up.
3. Cease the Comparison.
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Sometimes, things may not come easy to you. You might need to put in extra hours to grasp a concept that a colleague easily did. When this occurs, you have to remind yourself that it's normal. There are things that you'll excel in and others you'll suck in. That's the balance of life.
Not grasping something on the first try doesn't mean that you won't. Just keep practicing and you'll get there.
4. Confide in Another
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The final tip is to verbalize those thoughts. By confiding in another, you get those negative thoughts out of your head. This way you'll feel less alone. You may even realize that they too have felt like that before.
I hope you found this article useful in your journey to overcome Imposter Syndrome. All the best.