April 2021 - The Life You Love

Let's Talk About Impostor Syndrome

Like most people would be, I was super excited when I was first offered my new job.  As I told people the exciting news, I received mixed reactions.  Most people were excited for me, but some told me it would just be a different kind of stress and pointed out the potential negatives.  Even though they were passing statements and honestly not wrong, my excitement was quickly replaced with fear and doubt.  Instead of sharing how happy I was that this department wanted me to work with them and how excited I was for a change, I told people that I had a new job but quickly followed up with how it probably wouldn't be any better and doubt that I would do a good job.  

Within a month of receiving the job offer, I had completely psyched myself out.  I began worrying if I'd be a good fit for the department and if coworkers would like me.  I obsessed over the idea that I'm actually a terrible therapist and don't know what I'm doing.  I spent quite a bit of time wondering if I'd be happy in the job and worrying about what I would do if I wasn't.

As I write this, I'm not sure whether I'm experiencing Impostor Syndrome or nervousness about the new job.  Probably both, but I want to talk about Impostor Syndrome today.  Impostor Syndrome is basically the feeling someone might get when they think they aren't actually good at or qualified to do what they're doing.  Sometimes the person experiencing Impostor Syndrome is worried that people around them will uncover the "truth" and see that they're a fraud.  Other people might react to Impostor Syndrome by overcompensating or even shutting down.  That last one is me.  Thankfully, there are several ways to deal with Impostor Syndrome.  I find that the best way to eliminate feelings or habits that we don't want is by replacing them with something we do want.

  • List your accomplishments, achievements, and attributes.  No matter how big or small, write down everything you've achieved that's related to the source of the Impostor Syndrome.  My list included my education, past jobs, and training I've completed.  I also wrote down positive characteristics of myself that may help me in my job.  This exercise is helpful in itself but also lays the groundwork for the next two techniques.
  • Repeat positive affirmations.  Replace doubt and negative self-talk with positive self-talk and encouraging statements.  The key to effective positive affirmations is to make them uplifting yet realistic.  I wouldn't believe a statement like, "I'm the best therapist," but I believe something like, "I am constantly becoming a better therapist."  Use your positive traits to write these affirmations.  Repeat them at least once daily.
  • Challenge your negative thoughts.  When you have a negative thought related to Impostor Syndrome, find evidence that challenges that thought.  Identify proof that that negative thought isn't true, at least not entirely.  When I worry that I'm not good enough for this job, I remind myself that that isn't true because I have job experience and references that show that I am.
  • Do something that will make you feel more competent and qualified.  One of the ways I'm tackling Impostor Syndrome is by completing a new training that relates to my profession.  Learning new skills or reinforcing old information is a great way to feel more competent.  Read a book, complete a training, attend a conference, listen to a podcast.
  • Find other ways to feel fulfilled.  I've found that I'm more worried about work when I have no other outlet for my time and effort.  This is especially true while I'm working from home and there's less separation of home and work.  Make time for hobbies or spend time with friends.  Spend time in places where you feel peaceful and present.  Anything that makes you feel proud and fulfilled!

    If you're experiencing Impostor Syndrome, know that you aren't alone!  Try one of these methods and let me know what you think.  If you have any other tips or tricks that have worked for you, share them below.


    March 2021 Favorite Products

    Better late than never, right?  I'd love to pretend that being late is something super unheard of for me, but anyone who knows me well knows I'm always late unless it's to brunch or a party.  I'm honestly a little confused as to how it's already April 5th and March seems like a blur.

    Hairitage Split End Rescue || I'm honestly SO surprised how much I like this product.  My split ends have been pretty noticeable lately, but I'm trying to avoid cutting my hair for literally no logical reason.  When I use this product, it makes my split ends basically disappear.  I'm not a huge fan of the scent, but for about $8, I can deal with it.

    47 Brand || I've seen a couple influencers wear this hat and naturally I had to get it.  It's so easy to dress up for dinner or to add a little something to your loungewear.  This pattern makes it a little more feminine and trendy than a traditional hat.  And when you sign up for emails, you get an offer code for 15% off!  With tax and shipping, it came out to just less than $31.

    Sky High Mascara || This mascara has sold out at stores and seems to be a favorite for a lot of people.  I think it's a good mascara for the price (only $9) and there's a chance I'll keep buying it because my usual favorite is almost $30. I combine it with the L'Oreal Paris Voluminous Conditioning Primer Mascara.  If you decide to try this mascara, try to find it somewhere other than Ulta simply they charge more than other places like Target.

    Soap & Glory Glow Your Mind Nourishing Cleansing Balm || I swear this stuff is magic for removing makeup.  I rub some on my dry face and then wipe it off with a wet, warm Makeup Eraser.  Takes just a few gentle wipes to get a clean face.  Check out my highlights on my Instagram to see how quickly and easily this works!