“It’s not who you are that holds you back, it’s who you think you are not.” – Denis Waitley
Do you often find that you doubt yourself? That, at any moment, people will find out that you aren’t really capable of delivering at work, or unworthy of your achievements? Then you might be experiencing Imposter syndrome.
Imposter syndrome is especially prevalent at the moment during this period of remote working. Without the usual presence of a staff team or hustle and bustle of an office, those creeping thoughts of not feeling good enough can be harder to keep at bay.
Spending more time alone means that we have to look to ourselves to be our own cheerleader. Here are our some of our tips on how to overcome imposter syndrome whilst working from home:
1. Self-praise jar
Write down some words of encouragement onto small pieces of paper and add them to a jar to keep on your desk. This could be praise you have received from a colleague or manager, or some praise you feel like you need to hear. When you start to feel imposter syndrome creeping in, take a positive message from the jar and give yourself a little boost.
You could turn this into a team exercise, and create a praise jar for someone else!
2. Get Messy!
Imposter syndrome is rooted in the struggle for perfectionism. Take 5 minutes during your lunch break and use a creative outlet to explore the feeling of letting go and loosening up. You might enjoy doing this by:
- Colouring OUTSIDE of the lines
- Select a subject, and attempt to draw it with your eyes closed
- You could make this more challenging by setting a 30 second time limit, or adding the rule that you can’t lift your pencil off of the paper
See what you come up with! The goal here isn’t to create a perfect picture, it is relax and let go.
3. Bust a move
What better way to kick start your day? Before you settle down to work, put on a song that makes you feel empowered. Dance along and try to make your body take up as much space as possible. Create dynamic shapes around the classic power stance, and start your day off in a fun and energetic way. Remind yourself to not take things too seriously, and dance like no one is watching!
4. Superhero profiles
It is highly likely that your colleagues have also felt imposter syndrome at some stage in their careers. So, why not take a lead in boosting team moral, and flip this feeling on it’s head?
Start off a fun email thread called ‘Superhero profiles’. Describe one of your colleague’s best qualities as if they are superpowers. Make it silly, but with clear admiration.
Nominate another colleague to keep the thread going. At the end, you’ll have an empowered team with not-so-secret superhero identities!
5. And most importantly… Practice self-compassion
Self-compassion allows us to reframe our internal voice from one that is demeaning and critical to one that is understanding and forgiving.
Focussing on being compassionate towards ourselves can reduce the fear of failure and self-doubt.
When imposter syndrome becomes overwhelming, remember to take a step back. Life exists outside of work, and you deserve to feel happy and that you are enough. Take time to do the things you enjoy and find some headspace.
You might also like to read our blog post on 6 tips to grow your self confidence.
We hope these tips have been useful to you and will help to make your time working from home more fulfilling. Remember, you are doing better than you think!