Mental Health · New Year · Reflection · Relationships

Imposter Syndrome

I’ve been feeling terribly frustrated lately, and I wasn’t able to verbalize my frustration until I read something about how imposter syndrome affects our relationships. I’m not even sure where I read this. (Honestly, probably Instagram at 3 am while falling asleep.)

Imposter syndrome refers to the phenomenon of self-doubt and anxiety that stems from feeling inadequate. People who experience imposter syndrome typically feel they aren’t good enough or competent. They often attribute their successes to luck or other external factors rather than their own merit.

I am, admittedly, no stranger to imposter syndrome in my career. It was a contributing factor in my decision to quit my “dream job”. Imposter syndrome paralyzed me and made me so afraid to mess up that I had major creator’s block. These days, it causes me to overexert myself so no one finds out I actually don’t deserve my job. I’m working on it, okay?

However, I had no idea how imposter syndrome affects our personal relationships. Those same feelings of inadequacy can cause us to fear being judged or rejected. I often experience intrusive thoughts that say things like, “Your friends don’t really like you. They just don’t know how to tell you.” It sometimes makes me so overwhelmed that I’m afraid to reach out to people; I end up distancing myself and aggravating that insecurity.

These fears eat away at me. I don’t want to feel like this. But recognizing my insecurities has sincerely been helping me figure my way out of this pit of self-doubt. Every day, I work on challenging those thoughts. I try to reach out to friends. I tell myself I’m not a burden on my friends.

If you’re experiencing this, you’re not alone! Apparently, imposter syndrome affects more people than I realized. Everyone is afraid they suck. We don’t suck. You and I? We’re AMAZING.

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