The 3 Ways Imposter syndrome can affect us

Jun 04, 2022

I listened to a really insightful podcast the other day all about the ways in which imposter syndrome can impact us. I found it a very useful breakdown and way to think about imposter syndrome.


The three ways it can impact us are:


Visibility - we don’t want to be really seen

Novelty - when something is new to us

Minority - when we are underrepresented in whatever group we are in


For more details on some of the specific triggers of imposter syndrome, you can check out this previous blog post here.



In working with female entrepreneurs, I found a lot of them saying that they didn’t really want to be “seen” in the business - they knew on some level that they needed to be the ‘face’ of the  business, but they were really really afraid to put themselves out there. Our not wanting to be visible can show up in other ways, like not speaking up in meetings, or not wanting to present in front of a crowd. It can also mean that we really retreat into ourselves and try to play small. Being really seen for who we are can be terrifying, but know that you will be accepted by those who are the most important.



It can feel scary whenever we try something new. And sometimes things are just too scary to even think about trying at all! But there will be a time when we all are involved in something new - whether it’s a new job, a promotion, working with a new client, or on a new project. Doing new things is hard. It makes us feel uncomfortable. And for the most part, we want to stay comfortable. But no one ever grew in their comfort zone - if you want to progress you need to stretch.



Feeling like we’re the only X in the room can bring up all sorts of feelings - that we don’t belong, that we’re in the wrong room, that we’re too stupid to be here, that we’re representing our entire race or gender (which can bring all sorts of additional anxieties). We also need to acknowledge that we deserve to be there, that we are good enough, that the other people in the room know what they’re doing by selecting us to be there, that this is hard but we can do hard things. Also know that everyone you represent has your back.


Now that you know the specific ways that imposter syndrome can affect us, what will you do differently?


Link to the full podcast episode here.

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