Impostor Syndrome: 1 In 5 People Think They Can’t Do Their Job, But Experts Say It’s All in Their Head
Do you feel like you don’t deserve your job? You may have impostor syndrome.
Have you ever sat in a work meeting, looked around and thought “I am dangerously under-qualified to be working here, and soon, they are going to find me out for the liar I am”? Well you may be suffering from something called “Impostor Syndrome”, and you’re not alone.
According to a study conducted by Brigham Young University, up to 20 percent of people say they feel like a fraud. It might be that they feel they are not capable of fulfilling their job requirements, or it might be that they feel they are not smart enough to be included in a meeting or to voice their opinion. However if you’re reading this thinking “well that’s me” but you also have a fake passport and got a senior management position by lying on your resume, then you might just be an actual impostor.
For those who really are struggling with the untrue feeling that they are a big fat phony, it might be helpful to know that impostor syndrome affects people from all walks of life; even Neil Armstrong famously said that he sometimes felt like an impostor. And if you feel unworthy after walking on the fricken moon, then it’s definitely all in your head.
And the good news from this study is that there is a way to negate those feelings and switch from feeling like an impostor to an expert. The study found that whilst students feel like an impostor when talking to fellow students in their field, they felt like much more of an expert when talking to people outside of their area of study. So that’s the key: If you talk to fellow experts you’ll feel like a big dummy, but if you regale strangers on the bus with factoids about your job, you’ll feel like Einstein. A really weird, annoying Einstein.
So shake it off. Look in the mirror and say, “I’m worthy, I’m qualified to be here” and go out there and be the best chef, accountant, scientist, race-car driver, gelato maker, or lawyer you can be. Remember it’s all in your head, and you are qualified to do your job. Unless you actually are a fraud, in which case: you’re number’s up buddy. We’re onto you.