Dinah reading Give your imposter notice

Imagine if you decided that, from today, you were giving that imposter in your head thirty days notice to move on, or be moved out. Imagine deciding that you were going to tell that imposter, the one that holds you back, talks you out of opportunities or change, and makes you doubt your proven abilities that you were calling time on the negative nonsense and giving your track record some credit. Imagine.

Your imposter does not believe in your credibility; the reputation you have established by doing what you say you will do, when you say you will do it. You know you’re good at that, right? Yet, when the imposter starts undermining your credibility, you are ready to accept that you are rubbish at it.

Your imposter does not believe you deserve to get that promotion, despite all the years of graft and learning that you’ve put in that means so many people at your place of work now ask you for help, it’s impossible to get everything done in a normal day, so you work longer and longer hours.

Your imposter wants you to understand that this blog doesn’t apply to you!

Seriously, this voice has moved in and been the main voice in your own self-talk for so long, that you’ll believe anything it tells you. Almost anything you tell yourself. Provided it is negative, of course.

I ask again; can you imagine how it would be to break this cycle? You can. Oh yes, you absolutely can, you just have to decide that this is a habit and that you’re ready to replace it in your life with a new, positive behaviour to take its place.

Still with me? Great – then here are my first three steps to tackling the imposter and I’d love you to take these three steps starting right now:

  1. Acknowledge that you do this ‘self-talk imposter thing’ and commit to being more aware of how often you do it and what you tend to say to yourself. Simply acknowledging this is something you do, is a big step in challenging your own behaviour pattern. Call yourself out on this.
  2. Stop being angry with your imposter and, instead, acknowledge that in reality, that voice is often about fear or shame – or both – and getting angry with yourself is not helping. Try noticing what it is that makes you feel the need to undermine your own strengths or successes – and reassure yourself that you’ve got things covered.
  3. Ask for help from a friend who has your back. You know already who this person is – the colleague or friend who is always telling you to stop putting yourself down, or to go for things because you’re more capable than you think you are. Ask them to help you challenge your pattern of behaviour. Get brave and tell them you’re dealing with the voice that stops you taking chances or going for that promotion; I guarantee they’ll be delighted to cheer you on.

These first three steps will get you challenging your language and also being more aware of how often the imposter voice is taking charge, rather than being reassured. Perhaps you can ask yourself what you get out of listening to the imposter? Tough to be honest about this, but worth looking at what you’re getting out of allowing that voice to stop you.

I’d love to know how you get on.