Ep 198 Overcoming Imposter Syndrome
I recently had the privilege of being asked to speak at our local Women’s Professional Network in the topic of Imposter Syndrome. My first thought was – how fun – and immediately to follow was – why would she ask me? It was a perfectly timed question from my brain.
Some studies show 70% of women experience imposter syndrome. Listen today as I talk about what imposter syndrome is, where it comes from, and how you can overcome it.
If you have experienced this it’s important to know – 𝗬𝗼𝘂 𝗮𝗿𝗲 𝗻𝗼𝘁 𝗮𝗹𝗼𝗻𝗲.
𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘨𝘳𝘦𝘢𝘵 𝘯𝘦𝘸𝘴 𝘪𝘴 – 𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘦 𝘪𝘴 𝘴𝘰𝘮𝘦𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘤𝘢𝘯 𝘥𝘰 𝘢𝘣𝘰𝘶𝘵 𝘪𝘵 – listen today to learn more. Download the free guide and get started on changing it for yourself today.
In This Episode:
- What imposter syndrome is
- Where imposter syndrome comes from
- Why imposter syndrome is a problem
- 3 steps to overcome imposter syndrome
- 3 N practice
- Ladder thoughts
- Take it up a notch
- Brooke Castillo – The Life Coach School
- Jon Acuff – Soundtracks
- Free guide: www.michellebourquecoaching.com/198
Michelle Bourque 0:00 You are listening to the it’s your time podcast and I’m your host certified life coach Michelle Arnold Bourque. And today’s episode I’m discussing overcoming impostor syndrome. Welcome to the it’s your time Podcast, the podcast. We’re busy professionals, like you get the practical solutions and support you need to gain control of your schedule. So you can strive to be the best in your career, but without the stress and overwhelm. If you’re looking to increase your energy and decrease your stress, you are in the right place.
Michelle Bourque 0:36 Hello, hello, hello. Welcome back to the podcast friends. How are you doing today? I have a funny story to share with you. So I was recently asked to do a presentation for a local women’s professional network. And the topic was impostor syndrome. My immediate thought was how fun I love these women. And then right after that, my next thought was, why would she ever asked me? Which is so funny, because it’s exactly the topic I’m talking about. Right? And I know that this affects so many women. And I thought it would be a great episode to share with you today. So today, I want to talk about what impostor syndrome is, what causes it, why is it a problem. And then most of the episode, I want to share some tools for you to be able to overcome it. Now, I want you to think of something in your life where this might apply so that you can actually begin implementing it. For example, if you’re a pharmaceutical rep who maybe wants to make the leap into device sales, but you’re just not quite sure if you’re ready. Or perhaps you are a device rep and you want to make the leap into management or into a corporate area of the business. And you think I’m just not sure if it’s the right time. I want you to think about that. When you’re listening to today’s episode, so let’s jump right in. What is impostor syndrome? It is really, when we are doubting ourselves, right? It’s uncertainty about our talents, our abilities, and the sense of unworthiness that really doesn’t align with what others think about you. So in short, it’s almost like you think that You’ve fooled others into believing someone that you aren’t, which is just so funny. Because if you think about it, we are thinking that our skills are not up to par. And yet, we think we’re so good at fooling others into believing that we’re something that we are not right. And we see external achievements and success, we do see that, like you are able to see that you have achieved things, it’s just that you don’t believe you deserve them. And impostor syndrome is generally accompanied by and exacerbated by perfectionism, right? This idea of black and white thinking, and an intense fear of rejection and failure, which leads to the thought patterns that create insecurity, anxiety, and stress. Now, Michelle Bourque 3:20 when we look at what causes it, oftentimes, this comes from family conditioning. So if you came from a family with high expectations, or maybe even parents that were super critical, it comes from critical self talk, right now remember, we’ve talked about your reticular activating system in the past, and that will find evidence for what we believe to be true. So if you believe that you are not worthy, you will find all of the ways in which this is true. And comes from society pressures, especially for women, right? We are socialized to, for example, be bold, but don’t be a bitch. We’re told that Appearance is important. But you don’t want to be too vain. And we’re told to be smart, and ambitious. But there might be some guys out there that might not be too comfortable with that. So there are these constant messages that have us doubting ourselves. And we believe that we need to receive praise from external sources versus internally. So why is this a problem? Number one, it holds you back from going after your Next Level Living and it often leads to fewer opportunities to increase your income because you are holding yourself back. And lastly, it just perpetuates the cycle with the ones around you. Right. We are examples to younger generations. We are examples to those is around us. And when we are believing our doubt, then we’re really missing out. Now, I want you to consider what all of these might have in common. It was a fluke. I didn’t deserve it, people will find out that I’m not really that smart. I’m afraid I will make mistakes. I’m not quite ready for that job, or I’m not quite ready for that promotion yet. I don’t know, I just got lucky. I probably won’t know the answer. So I’m just going to sit here they are for sure going to figure out that I’m not sure what the hell I’m doing here. What do all of these have in common? They are all thoughts, right? These are just sentences that we tell ourselves. And at the moment, we believe it. But there are options. Now before I go into more about the thinking and the thoughts and the options, I want to just remind you of the importance of feelings. And when I was researching the presentation, I found this great quote from Brooke Castillo, she is also one of my mentors, where I trained at the Life Coach School. And she says our ability to grow is really our ability to move beyond our doubtful thinking. Michelle Bourque 6:34 Imagine if that was really as easy as it could be right? Our ability to grow is really our ability to move beyond our doubtful thinking. Because remember, imposter syndrome often leaves us feeling doubt, fear, stressed, anxious, but this is because of the thoughts we are thinking about our abilities. It is not because of our abilities. And remember, Life is 5050 We must be willing to feel the fear and the doubt and keep going in order to feel confidence in obtaining our next goals. And confidence doesn’t just rain upon us, because all of a sudden we decide that we just will feel confident. And we are going to tell ourselves mantras that say I am amazing. I am confident. I am great. No, that crap doesn’t work. What I want to remind you about that I’ve talked about here on previous podcasts as well, especially around the idea of competence is what Dan Sullivan talks about with his four C’s, you have to have a commitment. And I want you to question Are you committed to your self doubt more than you are committed to your goal? So find the commitment in the goal. We can doubt our doubt about that. The next C is courage. Have the courage to feel the doubt it is Oh kay. You can just keep going which leads us to capabilities. That’s where we want to take action. And as we take more action, that’s when we build our confidence. Now, how is it that we actually overcome impostor syndrome, I have a three step process here a and I want you to know that I have a guide for you. So this can be easily downloadable. And you can use it and situations as they arise for you. I’ll have the link in the notes. But you can simply go to Michelle Berg coaching.com, forward slash 198. That’s going to be today’s episode. So step number one is the three N process. It’s very simple. The first N is notice, you notice your thoughts as they come up. The next n is not believe remind yourself, this is normal. And you don’t have to believe the automatic negative thinking. Don’t resist it, don’t judge it. You can simply not believe it. Oftentimes, we try to push it away think we shouldn’t be thinking it and that just adds another layer on top of it. Now the third n is next level. What is your next level ladder thought so what I mean here is what is a thought that you can believe that is one step away from the negative thought that you are currently thinking. Step one, again, the three N process simply notice not Leave. And then next level. Now, when I’m talking about the next level ladder thought, what I’m talking about is, you notice the thought. So we’re going to take one current thought that you have noticed, again, one sentence, there may be many, there is no right or wrong thought to choose, just pick one, and brainstorm what you wish you could believe. So let’s go back to the example that perhaps you want to go as a pharmaceutical rep, to a device rep. And you think I’m not ready yet. We know from the thing field do cycle, that that will likely have you feel uncertain, most likely, I would imagine, if you’re thinking I’m not ready yet. And if you’re feeling uncertain, you might not really take much action towards going after the new job. So what can be the next thought that you think on purpose instead, and again, this is not go to rainbows, daisies and butterflies, this is going to be what is the next thought that you can believe. And it might be as simple as they’ve hired me for my current job, because they thought I would be really good at it. Or I’ve done the work in the past to get this job. And I’m sure I can figure out the next one.
Michelle Bourque 11:21 We know if you’re thinking that I’ve done the work for this job, and I can figure it out for the next we’ll most likely have you feeling more determined, I would imagine. And if you’re feeling determined, you are much more likely to start taking action towards that job. And in fact, getting closer to it. Now, the third step is that you have to take all of this up a notch. So number one, is the three end process, notice this, not believe it? And then what’s the next level that you can think step two, ladder thoughts. Take the current thought, just pick one, brainstorm what you wish you could believe. And I want to take a moment here because you can visually think of a ladder. And when you brainstorm what you wish you could believe, let’s put that up at the top top top rung, right. So that will be your rainbows, daisies and butterflies thought that you don’t really believe yet. And then each rung in between on the ladder is your ladder thought thinking. That’s where you take your next best thought, and you keep moving up the ladder, until you do believe that goal thought and then step three, take it up a notch. So we want to re wire your thinking on purpose. And we want to make sure that you are giving your thoughts equal airtime and practicing daily. So, in the guide, I have developed an area where you can write down what some of your current thoughts are. Remember, thoughts are optional, you do not have to believe your thought, especially if it is not useful, and it is not giving you the results that you want in your life. So the activity is to gain awareness on your current beliefs. What are some of the things that you currently say to yourself when you are considering a promotion, or even receiving a compliment? Maybe it’s having an opportunity to speak up and today’s podcast I have focused more on the career area, but this can be also if you are perhaps dating and looking for a relationship and what are the stories that you tell there you can absolutely implement this process. In any situation where you are feeling doubt where are you are feeling as if you are an imposter. Now, the next part of this is the letter thought activity, which I have just mentioned. Again, there’s an area that goes into this in the guide, if you want to download it, you figure out what it is that you’re currently thinking. Again, just pick one thought just pick one sentence because when you do that, you’re able to get such clarity on it. And then you can always go back and look at another sentence and another sentence and another sentence. But when you see how your results are coming from your thoughts, it’s fascinating. So figure out what you’re currently thinking. brainstorm what you would like to think of yourself. So this is going to be that goal thought this is going to be the one at the top of the ladder. You don’t believe it yet, and that’s totally okay. So maybe it’s something like I can achieve anything I want or I am smart enough to do any job and then come up with, let’s say three new thoughts that you can believe. So these are not as optimistic as your goal thought. But they feel more positive or neutral than your current thought. So, examples might be, I have received positive reviews in the past, they hired me, because they thought I would do a good job. Just go up the ladder until you get closer to the goal thought that you want to think on purpose. And then when we’re taking it up a notch. Here’s another quote that is just so perfect for this, from Jon Acuff, who is the author of soundtracks. If you listen to any thought long enough, it becomes part of your personal playlist, you guys, we are in charge of creating the playlist, where are the thoughts that you can maybe turn it down a notch, those are the thoughts that are telling you how terrible you are, and how you will likely fail, and it won’t be perfect. So you might as well not even do it, turn the dial down on that, turn the dial up on the thoughts that you want to think on purpose. So practice your latter thoughts daily. Remember, a lot of times,
Michelle Bourque 16:18 some of these automatic negative thoughts are just running subconsciously in the background. And they just go and go and go and go, we need to be purposeful and thinking that we can figure it out that we can absolutely take on this promotion. And that might look like putting reminders in your phone. Maybe it’s post it notes in your bathroom, maybe it’s a daily journal, like what ever works for you do it. I like to have reminders in my phone. So every couple of hours, something will pop up for me as a reminder, to tell myself, whatever the thought is that I’m working to rewire. I have that. And I have I’ve mentioned before the things app, so I have a little project area, with all of the new thoughts that I am working to believe on purpose. It’s a process friends, we’ve gone years and years doubting ourselves and believing that we have to have this idea of perfection in order to go for the next big thing. It’s just such a lie. And it really holds us back. We need to give equal airtime and purposefully think every single day. What am I most proud of today? What were three wins for me today? What do I want my opinion of myself to be today? Those are some really good questions to ask yourself. Because at the end of the day, no one can convince you that you are good enough. Only you can do that. It’s an inside job friends. We do not have to believe the automatic thoughts. We can in fact, start doubting our doubt. And when we do more of that, we can go after our dreams. You totally got this. Okay. Reminder, grab this guide. Michellebourquecoaching.com/198. It’s super simple. It will give you prompts to be considering as you journal reminders on the three step process in order to overcome impostor syndrome, and it gets you on the email list so that every week you receive new free tools and content from me, doesn’t that sound like fun? Okay, friends, that’s what I have for you today. Let’s circle back next week but for now, make it a great day. Take care Michelle Bourque 19:09 Did you know you can take this work to a deeper level with me one on one, go to Michelle Bourquecoaching.com, and click on get started to begin
Transcribed by https://otter.ai – minimal edits