“There comes a point when we have to say, I'm here to love my life, and to figure out who I am...Not who you think I should be”
― Sharon Pearson
When you finally decide you need to change your life, it’s hard to know what to do first.
“Where do I start?”
“Do I have everything I need?”
“Who can I ask for help?”
“Can I really do this?”
Be careful of that last one…that just might be the infamous imposter syndrome sneaking into your process. (Like I introduced in my last blog post)
You see, imposter syndrome tells you that you aren’t enough, that you aren’t worthy of what you have or what you’re doing–even though you’ve worked hard, learned skills, and gained wisdom through your experience.
Imposter syndrome freezes you in your tracks. It can make growth, change, or even fully RECEIVING what you have feel impossible. Because you feel like you don’t deserve to be where you are, doing what you do, or enjoying a particular achievement or accolade.
I see imposter syndrome showing up for many of my hypnotherapy clients, and it’s a crucial barrier to getting closer to the lives they (and you!) want to have.
Thankfully, there are three simple first steps to help you move past imposter syndrome and feel worthy of taking up space and knowing what you know.
Pssst: For several free and subscription-based resources to help you combat or prevent imposter syndrome from getting in the way of your life progress, be sure to check out my website at www.themindfulmovement.com.
Step 1: Retrain Your Brain
Of course, this is one of those steps that is much easier to say than do. But stay with me.
You know yourself, and you know those creeping thoughts that come up, always at the worst time–right when you’re giving that presentation, interviewing for a new job, launching your business, or penning your first book draft.
Maybe those quiet, whispered words tell you that you don’t have the time, or that you aren’t ready, or that someone else can do it better…
It’s paramount to recognize when the imposter messaging comes in, and then replace the thought right away–in the moment if you can.
I don’t have the time, becomes, I won’t have the time until I make it a priority–I’m worthy of my time.
I’m not ready, becomes, I have everything I need to get started.
Someone else can do it better, becomes, I am strong, capable, and prepared for the job.
Be ready to swap out those negative thoughts. You have the power to choose once you recognize your broken-record negative messaging. Plus, practice makes progress. You’ll need to “act your way to right thinking” by intentionally replacing negative messaging with more positive words before it becomes automatic.
Step 2: Set Up Rewards
This is a fun step! Ask any trainer or teacher, and they’ll tell you that positive reinforcement remains among the best means of changing mindsets and actions.
When you get a reward or perk for doing something “good”, you are motivated to get that reaction again. And again. And again.
So as you start combating imposter syndrome, know how you will treat yourself for the strides you make.
If we go back to the book-writing example, perhaps you indulge in a long stretch or walk after each chapter you complete. Or even a cup of your favorite coffee—you’ve GOT this!
Become your own encourager–even if it feels uncomfortable, foreign, or awkward at first.
It’s essential to move away from beating yourself up when you think you’ve messed up, or when you feel that whisper that you aren’t good enough creeping into your psyche.
Punishments, which include that private berating we all give ourselves, don’t work in the long run–so thank that voice for doing its best to keep you safe and small, and then let it know that you’re in the driver’s seat today.
Step 3: Have a Plan
If you’ve ever had a goal you’ve been working towards, you know there are often setbacks along the way. This fact doesn’t mean you aren’t qualified to get to the finish line, or that someone else could do it better than you.
The point is a setback or two in your process is inevitable–even if it means you didn’t nail the presentation, interview, or other step in the journey. The most important thing is to have a plan for when it happens.
When hiccups happen:
- Realize it’s normal. Yes, mistakes and stumbles make you wonderfully human. No, you shouldn’t give up. Yes, it’s ok to start again–you’re not broken and you’re not a failure.
- Dial down the instinctive inner beat-down. You are worthy of practice and progress, and you’re allowed to make mistakes.
- Accept responsibility. Understand your role in the set-back so you can move past it and perhaps act, organize, or speak differently the next time.
- Move on. Once you’ve walked through these steps, put the mistake behind you, let it go, and start again. Learning is allowed in EVERY situation. It’s part of what makes us imperfectly perfect.
Despite positive self-talk and mindset shifts, imposter syndrome can be a tricky beast to tame–and sometimes we all require a little help getting to the roots of it, so that you can set it aside for good and it doesn’t get to control your life anymore.
Life is a process, and we get to work through struggles with help. And I’m here with you and for you.
If you feel ready for a deeper dive into your change process, learn more about and schedule your first 90-minute hypnotherapy session with me HERE.
Remember that you’re not broken. You have everything inside you to energetically and joyfully engage in a confidence-boosting, stress-relieving, abundance-welcoming process for the rest of your life. (And that’s a process we can surely ALL get behind!)
I’m right here waiting with the map. Remember to click the link and find out more about how hypnotherapy can assist and accelerate the changes you want to see in your life–especially in releasing imposter syndrome and embracing a more confident, deserving YOU.