What is the Imposter Syndrome?

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Have you heard of the imposter syndrome? I am pretty sure you can work out what it is, because it’s likely you have felt it at some point.

I bring this up, as there was a great article on the BBC website and a 30 minute programme on Radio 4 as well about this phenomenon.

The article and radio programme shows that there are some super successful people out there (award winning writers and brain surgeons) who believe that at some point they are going to get found out and that someone is going to figure out that they do not know what they are really doing.

There are some very interesting parts. A scary bit that really jumps out is, that if everyone is winging it, who are the grown ups in charge that know what they are doing? Just think about it for a minute! Also, finding out what the Dunning-Kruger effect is? It is that, the ultra-confident people may simply be too incompetent to realise how incompetent they are. That made me smile!

This makes me think about some good advice I was given, that refers to this subject and I think is really helpful and I use quite often. The advice is –

“Don’t underestimate yourself”

but more importantly……..

“Don’t overestimate others”

They are probably feeling just like you are. So when you think everyone knows what they are doing, except you. You’re probably wrong.

I will try not to ruin the article and the radio programme any more, you should definitely read it and do take the time to listen the radio programme. If you do feel like a bit of a fraud (if you don’t, you lying) you will come out of listening to it feeling much better. You really will!

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