Imposter Syndrome In The Workplace: 5 Easy Tips To Own Your Abilities

by Mila Kalajdzieva
Recently, more and more people have been coming down with imposter syndrome. If you don’t know what that is, congrats! It means you’ve successfully avoided feeling like a fraud in your work environment. However, some of us haven’t been so lucky. That’s why we’re bringing you five easy tips that can help you own your success and abilities and feel at home with your job once again. Keep reading to find out how you can overcome this painful feeling.

Shockingly, a whopping 70% of people are expected to experience impostor syndrome at some point in their lives. And the worst thing is – nobody equips you with the skills needed to deal with it!

Before we start, it’s essential to note that although these feelings are valid, they’re not definite. Fortunately, you can take simple steps to change your mindset and view on knowledge and success. And now, let’s get into it!

What is Imposter Syndrome?

If you haven’t encountered this term before, Imposter Syndrome is a psychological phenomenon associated with feelings of “intellectual phoniness.” Namely, this syndrome is persistent self-doubt, insecurity, and a growing belief that your success is due to luck and not innate capabilities or learned skills.

Surprisingly, this term has been around since the 1970s but only recently gained traction because of the role of social media and increasing digitalization. Therefore, as we bear witness to new trends, unmastered skills, and lack of knowledge on a topic, it’s hard not to feel out of place in a constantly changing world. By extension, these experiences foster an endless cycle of negative sensations.

To illustrate, some of the symptoms of imposter syndrome include:

  • Beating yourself up for mistakes you’ve made
  • Anxiety about being discovered as a “fraud”
  • Defining yourself by your career
  • Inability to accept praise or compliments
  • Downplaying your accomplishments
  • Reluctance to ask for help
  • Second-guessing decisions and general indicisiveness
  • Negative self-perceptions and feelings of being “less than”
  • Overworking to the point of burnout
  • Inability to relax after the work day is finished

What can I do about Imposter Syndrome?

Luckily, these feelings don’t last forever. On the contrary, you can take steps into account starting from today. Plus, our tips are not difficult to incorporate into your daily work life.

Sounds good? Let’s start.

Place yourself in a supportive environment

Toxic or overly competitive work environments can breed imposter syndrome and other related mental issues. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to willingly place yourself in positive environments that further your personal and professional growth. Fortunately, that’s as easy as surrounding yourself with colleagues that aren’t constantly trying to one-up you. Instead, they uplift you and celebrate your achievements.

Acknowledge your negative thoughts

Sadly, negative thoughts can be all-encompassing. However, a negative mindset doesn’t have to be a death sentence; conversely, it can be a strong driving force. So, next time a negative thought comes up, acknowledge it but don’t engage with it further. Instead, recognize it as simply a thought and not a fact. Then, try to counter it with a self-affirming statement about yourself or your abilities. Soon enough, this response will become second nature.

Make a list of all your achievements

Whenever you find yourself in a pit of despair, and you can’t stop thinking about your failures and shortcomings, this is a perfect time to turn your thoughts around. Therefore, it’s beneficial for you to make a list of all your accomplishments, no matter how small. Did you have the best project at school when you were a kid? Write that down. Has your boss complimented you on your work recently? Jot that down as well. Soon, the number of achievements will surprise you, even though some of them might have seemed trivial at the time.

Talk to a mentor

A problem shared is a problem halved. You can significantly lighten your burden by talking about your feelings and issues with a trusted mentor. Fortunately, this mentor doesn’t have to be somebody from work. Instead, it can be anyone older and wiser whom you admire. It’s important not to hold anything back when talking to your mentor because you never know how they might be able to help you.

Set attainable goals

Last but not least, when struggling with imposter syndrome, it’s crucial to set realistic expectations regarding yourself and your work. If your short-term goals are something along the lines of “Become CEO in a month,” then you’re already setting yourself up for failure. Instead, your goals should be things you can achieve quickly and easily. Therefore, you’ll have a feeling of accomplishment rather than regret and slowly equip yourself with that much-needed confidence.


That’s all, folks!

Hopefully, you’ve found our list beneficial, and you’re ready to put these tips to good use in your fight against imposter syndrome. Remember, your thoughts are not facts, so you shouldn’t treat them as such.