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Imposter syndrome archetypes

So much of imposter syndrome comes down to how you define success and failure e.g. does success = being perfect? Dr Valerie Young created the following 5 imposter syndrome archetypes. Most people identify with more than one. Here are the 5 archetypes and some affirmations for each one.


The Perfectionist

You expect perfection and see anything less as a failure. Even if something goes 99% well, you will focus on the 1% that didn't. Your perfectionism can cause you to procrastinate for fear of getting things wrong or being judged. This can keep you stuck. The great news is, you get to decide what's important. Does everything really need to be done perfectly? Affirmation: "I set my own standards. Done is better than perfect."

The Superperson

You are very similar to the perfectionist but you have many roles and expect to do them all perfectly (e.g. parent, employee, side hustler, friend, perfect child, grandchild etc). If you drop any of these balls at any point, you feel like a failure. You are at risk of burnout - you're human and it's impossible to be perfect at everything all of the time. Just like the perfectionist; YOU get to decide what's important. Affirmation: "My needs matter. I make time for myself and my joy".


The Expert

You love to learn! Always taking a new course or completing a new qualification; your hunger for knowledge is insatiable. Learning is great BUT is it holding you back from taking action? Do you really need another qualification? Are you avoiding speaking up or taking action out of fear that people will realise you don't know enough? You don't have to know everything to be successful or worthy. Affirmation: "I am enough and I know enough".

The Soloist

You struggle to ask for help and if you do ask for or accept help, it can feel like you've failed. Any joint achievements feel less so because you didn't do it all by yourself. Just remember, some of the most successful people have shared how much help and support they had along the way. If asking for or accepting help gets you to your goals faster; is it really a bad thing? Affirmation, "I deserve support, accepting help is a strength".


The Natural Genius

While your friends were studying hard, you probably crammed the night before and got straight As! You've always learned and picked up new skills easily and with minimal effort so when you have to try, it can feel like a failure. This can then stop you from trying new things. Stop measuring your success / intelligence / worth by how easily things come to you; enjoy the journey (not just the destination) and embrace the opportunity to flex those intellectual muscles. Affirmation: "I value the things I work hard to achieve".

As I said above, You deserve to be successful and to fully enjoy your success! If imposter syndrome is holding you back, please feel free to book a consultation. I offer a range of services to help you overcome imposter syndrome, once and for all. If nothing else, just know that you are not alone and you can totally overcome everything that is holding you back. 

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More about imposter syndrome...

Imposter syndrome is incredibly common and most people will experience it at some point. 

*Click here to jump to the 5 imposter archetypes*

Imposter syndrome can show up as:

* Perfectionism

* Feelings of inadequacy

* Inability to own your success

* Career limitations

* Not reaching your full potential

* Chronic over-achievement 

* Burnout

If you ever say any of the following then you might be experiencing imposter syndrome!

"I just got lucky"

"I was in the right place at the right time"

"It's only because they like me"

"If I can do it, anybody can"

At the start of my own career I was confident, self-assured and fearless. After securing a big promotion, I found myself in a toxic environment where I was the only woman of colour, the youngest person at my level and from a very different background to many of my peers. Imposter syndrome very quickly took hold of me and I found myself working extremely long hours and on the verge of burnout. Despite regular praise and performing to a high level, I never felt I was doing enough and I was scared that everyone would find out I didn't deserve to be there. It took some work but I overcame imposter syndrome and so can you.

It is absolutely possible for you to overcome your negative inner critic, feel great about yourself and achieve your career goals and dreams. I support individuals through a combination of Rapid Transformational Therapy (to identify the root cause of your symptoms, help you to heal, move forward and rewire your mind), Coaching (supporting you as you move towards your goals, free from what was holding you back) and DISC personality profiling (to improve your self-awareness and help you start owning your greatness). 

I also work with companies to address the factors that cause imposter syndrome to be so prevalent within the workplace. Traditionally, people experiencing imposter syndrome were seen as flawed and in need of fixing. The reality is that it is a symptom of wider issues, whether in society or individual workplaces.

You deserve to be successful and to fully enjoy your success! If imposter syndrome is holding you back, please feel free to book a consultation. If nothing else, just know that you are not alone and you can totally overcome everything that is holding you back. 

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