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Three Ways to Combat Impostor Syndrome

I have always struggled with this voice in my head telling me that I am not "good enough" When I was twelve, I watched a motivational speaker change a woman's entire perspective about herself in one interaction. 

In that moment, I knew that's what I wanted to do with my life. 

But in my unending quest to live this dream, I had to fight the voice of my Inner Critic every step of the way. And the truth is that if you're finding yourself feeling like a phony despite your personal and professional achievements, you're not alone.

Even Oscar-winner Viola Davis has struggled with these thoughts. "It feels like my hard work has paid off, but at the same time I still have the impostor, you know, syndrome," Davis told ABC News after winning an Academy Award. “I still feel like I'm going to wake up and everybody's going to see me for the hack I am.”

Why do so many women struggle with this feeling of inadequacy and persistent self-doubt, despite their high achievements in life?

The truth is that we live in a culture that teaches us that our self worth is connected to our accomplishments and how other people view us.

Even as children, our worth is connected to our grades so receiving praise is directly connected to how our parents, teachers and how our peers see us.

Our culture does not foster a way to value ourselves for our intrinsic self-worth. Instead, we grow up in a world worried about how we’re perceived by others, overlooking successes and focusing on perceived flaws and imperfections.

The message we receive everywhere is that we have to hide those perceived flaws.

We listen to the voice in our mind, thinking, "I know I'm not as good as everyone thinks I am...but I can't let them know that."

This is the birth of your Inner Critic. Most people don't know this voice is their Inner Critic - they think it's the truth. This is what creates Impostor Syndrome.

Thankfully, the Inner Critic’s negative chatter is just a story that you have the power to overcome. 

Here are three tips to overcome your Inner Critic's impostor story: 

1) Set attainable standards for yourself. When you’re reaching for the impossibility of perfection, you’re allowing your Inner Critic to destroy your ability to appreciate your accomplishments. Acknowledge yourself for the ground you have taken, even when you perceive your achievements as small. Get in the habit of doing this for others as well.    

2) Accept a compliment. When someone says “You're a great friend” or “You’re really talented,” respond with a “Thank you!” instead of an “It’s no big deal” or another self-effacing reply.  Allow your Authentic Self to take in the compliment.

3) Stop saying you’re lucky. Yes, life often put us in the right place at the right time. AND you needed to be prepared before you were even ready for that right place or you’d miss out on that right time. You put in the work - own it!

Is Your Inner Critic Keeping You From Success?

Find out what your Inner Critic is saying to sabotage your success and how you can move past her limiting beliefs. 


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