The first time I came across the phrase, Imposter Syndrome, must have been in my head or randomly from a conversation or whatever but this is me trying to say that I don’t remember, yet I have always had the word deep in my head, expressing itself and finding meaning.
Imposter syndrome; that’s self explanatory enough. I didn’t even need to look it up on google or a book, wherever.
But for confirmation, I did look it up on google and just felt like yeah this is it!
I just knew it had to be about the feeling of thinking “Oh, it’s not all that” or that you’re not really worth the commendations, hype, and offers coming and even the things coming from you are not so authentic or worthy. Like you are living someone else’s life! Lying about your person! Took someone’s shine! And you may not be able to deliver or reproduce the exact thing you were recognized for again; like the results are always luck!
This feeling is so sad and demands you to want to prove your worth some more, so you feel you should work harder, do it yourself and not seek support, more efforts to feel like it’s you, it drains you, yet you stay hooked there in the feeling, regardless of the excellence and more results you’re getting.
Imposter syndrome tells you “You are not worth that, it was not really you that did or had that. Others are doing better, you only copied someone, it had already existed. That thing you did is not worth the prize you are receiving for it. You are a thief! Worthless! Unreal! Fake!”
Imposter syndrome is so mean. It’s like a “bad-belle” friend; they never wish you well or see anything special about you and they keep reminding you this through direct-cutting remarks like “oh well, can you calm down with feeling fly? You’re not the first and of course people do even better than you, but you are appreciated way better, It’s because you’re just lucky and connected…” or cutting through the corners like “Fine, that’s cool but I think I saw Aisha with a similar thing and omg it looked so good on her because she is thin and beautiful and I feel it was made for people…” and of course you know you’re chubby yourself, so you get the message your friend is trying to pass on! Now every other compliment that comes and evidence of how amazing it looks right before your eyes, don’t matter anymore. The negativity has found dominance.
Imposter syndrome doesn’t only come in achievements but daily existence. Like you wear a nice dress and it tells you that you are trying to copy Kim K and you can never be like her, you are fake, you are not all that. You praise a skincare product for making you glow and it tells you to shut up that it could be the weather or even genes!
It doesn’t necessarily mean you have a low self-esteem. In fact, everyone even the most seemingly confident boss has experienced the feeling of impersonation regardless of their hard work and achievements.
Imposter syndrome will not allow you to boldly tell someone what you do as a profession because it tells you that you’re not even good yet and what makes you think that you are really that. It will make you stay quiet when you ought to be blowing whistle about your value and what you bring to the table because it makes you feel that you don’t do much, others do better. It tells you that you are simply “wanna-be” or that you will be doing too much or bragging if you said you are or did what or not, and that you will be doing too much outside what you really are; it’s not humility sometimes, it’s simply a mental issue!
Sadly it can’t be totally erased but we can manage how we let the syndrome control our input and outcome of our lives.
You are not alone. It’s a thing. And a lot of people if not everyone, have had their share of the toxic relationship with imposter syndrome.