The Confidence Project

“You’re intelligent and successful… at least that’s what everyone says. So how come you don’t always feel that way?

“Instead of feeling satisfaction, with every achievement you’re filled with anxiety you’ll be unmasked as an incompetent fraud…

“But it doesn’t have to be that way.” [From the program site.]

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From article: Feeling Like A Fraud: Living With Impostor Syndrome, by Evelyn Kalinosky, Forbes.com:

Referring to impostor feelings among career women, public speaker and consultant Valerie Young, Ed.D., notes that their fears can “prevent them from fully enjoying their success and seizing opportunities, and can cause them to overwork to compensate for supposed deficiencies. “

“But ‘impostors’ are not the only ones who pay a price,” she continues. “The cost to their companies in terms of unrealized human potential can be enormous. … When qualified workers fear risks, get caught in the ‘expert trap’ and are prone to perfectionism and procrastination, there’s a leak in the corporation’s human resources pool.”

To become more aware of impostor thinking, Young suggests, among other things, looking for stereotyping and self-defeating attitudes that can be reflected in speech, such as women prefacing sentences with disclaimers like “This may not be right, but…” and discounting accomplishments with “Anyone could have done it” or “It wasn’t much.”

The Confidence Project

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From article: The Impostor Syndrome – Finding a Name for the Feelings, by Dr. Valerie Young:

“The people I’ve worked with come from all walks of life. They are doctors and nurses, educators and college students, lawyers and accountants, executives and administrative assistants, engineers and administrators, human service providers and human resource managers, computer programmers and program directors, architects and artists, police officers and principals.

“What they share in common is a deep desire to understand why, in the face of often overwhelming evidence to the contrary, they continue to doubt themselves, their competence, and their abilities.”

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