Block the Lies and Overcome Imposter Syndrome.
Updated: Nov 14, 2021
Have you ever experienced imposter syndrome?
As a business owner, you may have experienced imposter syndrome. Imposter Syndrome is the thought or belief that you are a fraud, a failure, or incapable of executing your work successfully. Although you are educated, an expert, and you have the credentials to perform well, you still believe that you are inadequate to hold your position.
I’ve experienced these false self-accusations too many times. I’d beat myself up if I felt like I didn’t accomplish a task effectively. If it wasn’t perfect, or even good enough to me, I’d get anxious. Anytime I wrote a poem or a song, I didn’t want to share it out of fear of being criticized. If I made a mistake on the job, I held back from explaining myself, because previous managers would accuse me of being too defensive.
When I became a business owner, I often felt like I was an imposter. I thought people wouldn’t take me seriously because I started a media business that seemed either too easy or too complex for me to operate. I felt like I’d fail because I didn’t have a lot of clients or a strong support system. This pattern of psychological dysfunction can damage your confidence in your work. If you don’t stop and block those lies, you could drive yourself down into a pit. On the flip side, we can overcome these vicious self-attacks and continue to uphold our positions with boldness.
Here are nine ways to help you overcome imposter syndrome:
Discover the root of your thought process: Find out when and where these thoughts started. Was it part of your upbringing? Are you having these thoughts because of a failed project or a mistake you made at work? Do you feel like a fraud because someone has told you that your business isn’t important? Shut down that lie. You are not an imposter.
Ignore the lies and know your truth: A person’s opinion is just that, an opinion. Although opinions and feedback are helpful, sometimes people like to troll, and they will project their own insecurities. Some will say anything bad to try and sabotage your reputation and mess up your business. Remember your truth, and know that you are fulfilling God’s purpose. You don’t have to believe the things they say about you and your business.
Don't count on their validation: Sometimes we look for validation from other people to help boost our confidence. If you always bank your business or creativity on their opinion, and you don’t get the feedback you want, you’ll always feel inadequate. We shouldn’t build complete confidence on someone else’s foundation. People may like your work today, and dislike it the next. If that happens, you’ll find yourself changing your business simply to impress instead of making an impact. That can cause you to feel like a fraud. We can put our complete confidence in God-who is the solid foundation of our business. And we can build up our confidence by acknowledging our strengths/weaknesses, working diligently, and executing our work accordingly.
Remember the purpose: God created you for a purpose, and you created your business for a purpose. You saw a need in your community and developed a solution. Your business is needed and your purpose is valuable. God equipped you with the knowledge, gifts, and tools to operate your business.
Celebrate the small victories: Give glory to God and celebrate the small achievements. Operating a business is hard work. Acknowledging the small wins will encourage you to continue. It will also help build your confidence. The journey to success comes with opposition and opportunities. When you have those times of feeling stuck, turn to prayer, ask for direction, and celebrate the small victories along to the next level.
Ask for help and outsource work: As the masterminds of our business, asking for help and delegating tasks can be difficult. We want to be in control and do it all. Putting trust in others takes courage. We need to choose a team wisely and hope their motives are pure. If we take on too much and fail at a task, we start doubting our abilities. Outsourcing work and building a trustworthy tribe is uncomfortable in the beginning, but it could be necessary for growing your business. Hiring someone with the skills you may lack is wise. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
Gain more knowledge and practice your craft: If you are not ready to outsource, learn to manage your business effectively, and develop new skills. If you lack some knowledge in certain areas of your business, there is no reason to feel embarrassed. There is always room to improve. We can apply the tools we learn to evolve our business. Read blogs, watch webinars, and ask questions.
Stop comparing your level to theirs: Comparing your level of success to others will bring your spirits low. You will feel left behind and you will start believing you’re not as good as the next business owner. Some people have a strong tribe of supporters while others are completely solo. Some have spouses who bring in additional income while others are the sole household provider. Some have operated their business for years while others are just starting. Some have to work three times as hard to be successful while others have more privilege. We all have a season of highs and lows. Give yourself grace, especially when you are putting in the hard work.
You and your business are valuable: You’ll often find that people need your service, but refuse to pay you the full price. When some people can’t afford your service, instead of being honest, they will attack your business, work, credibility, and character. This can make you feel like you’re not valuable. It’ll make you feel like you’re building a get-rich pyramid scheme. Don’t set back your prices to accommodate someone who can't afford your service. If you want to bargain and offer promotional rates, that is great. But remember you have an empire to build, a family to raise, and expenses to pay.
Disclosure: We are not a certified coach or therapist. Consult with a professional before making a life-changing experience.