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3 Ways to Beat Back Imposter Syndrome

Done is better than perfect. 

^ This was my motto ^ during grad school, when I was trying to wrap a dissertation while working a full time job and parenting a toddler.  

I pass this new motto to you in hopes it’ll help you manage the #1 killer of dreams: Imposter Syndrome.

Someone sent me this sweethearted question: 

“I recently made the decision to go independent, and my question is about how to manage fear of failure and imposter syndrome. I’m excited! But also terrified!”

Welcome to entrepreneurship. These feelings don’t really go away. The trick is to figure out how to manage them. 

Strategy 1: Get comfortable.

I mean, everyone has some imposter syndrome. Well…. almost everyone. Those people who don’t? They’re the ones who should. 

Say “Hello Imposter Syndrome, my old friend.” Have coffee together. Catch up on old times. 

Just don’t let it stop you from actually taking action. 

Imposter Syndrome often hangs out with Perfectionism. The reason we feel less than deserving of success or worth is often because we feel like we aren’t good enough yet. 

But what actually earns the doctorate is the finished dissertation. What actually gets you in front of people is the social media post. Not the draft you are endlessly tweaking.

Done is better than perfect. 

Get ok with “good enough.”

Strategy 2: Record success. 

When was the last time you tried something – and it worked? Probably already today. 

It doesn’t even have to be anything business related.

Took a gamble on takeout from a new restaurant and discovered a place in your heart for fried goat cheese. 

Swiped right and matched.

Tried a new shampoo. Even if it tangled your hair, you tried it and you learned new information about what you’ll never buy again. Awesome! Wisdom! Success!

Keep a record of what you try and what you learn. For a while, even record the supposed small stuff. The documentation is your track record that you are capable of risking failure and surviving. 

This evidence builds your confidence. 

In fact, write to me with one of these successes right now.

Strategy 3: Start paying attention to your competitors. Or stop.

Your competition is far from perfect. If you look carefully enough, for long enough, you’ll notice a typo in a tweet. Or a client they didn’t win. Or the absence of a strong marketing campaign. 

The point is, no one has it all figured out.

People don’t turn a spotlight on their shortcomings but if you study them, you’ll notice that your competitors or role models are just humans also struggling with imposter syndrome.

On the other hand, try muting your competition.

Stop letting them get in your head. That’s intimidating AF. Geez. Be kind to yourself. You don’t have to be like them to grow an amazing business.

In fact, the business model that makes you most comfortable won’t look like anyone else’s.