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  • Writer's pictureSandy Bonney

Speaking on Imposter Syndrome

In gratitude! The honor and pleasure recently to speak to a group on Imposter Syndrome!


Are you curious? I sure was two years ago. I actually thought it was new buzz marketing word. To my surprise I fit right in. The first classes I attended were tough to take ownership in my thinking. I was in judgement of myself? Was I suffering from this? I explored something similar when I took a three day courses at Landmark Forum on what they call “your racquet” assessment of your story, beliefs and actions.


Here a few things that groom our imposter syndrome.


Family environment. Growing up, parents or other family members might have put outsized emphasis on achievement or been overly critical.


Example: Nancy rushed home to tell her parents she received a 98 on her 8th-grade math test. She studied the terms every night for a week and is very proud of herself. Nancy’s parents always brag to their friends about her accomplishments. When Nancy excitedly tells her parents the good news, they say, “What happened? Why didn’t you get a 100?”


Social pressures. Being part of a social circle or group where approval or worth seems to be explicitly connected to achievement.


Example: Last quarter, Stewart received his invitation to the monthly executive dinner immediately after surpassing his sales record and was the hero of the sales team. This quarter, his numbers are down. The executive dinner rolls around and the invitation is nowhere to be found. It's like he doesn't exist.


Sense of belonging. Part of imposter syndrome is the fear of being found out and cast out.


Example: At the weekly staff meeting, Ralph’s manager calls on everyone else, despite having his hand up. When he finally calls on Ralph, with two minutes remaining, he avoids eye contact and dismisses Ralph ‘s comment. None of Ralph’s coworkers respond or acknowledge his insight. Ralph feels excluded and wonders if it’s because the new shirt he got on clearance looks cheap. He grew up wearing hand-me-downs and the team can probably tell he's not one of them.


This type of thinking sabotages you taking your business to the next level. A thriving life. If you like to have a conversation around it, please reach out to me. You matter and everyday you accept your imposter syndrome you miss the best parts of you.



We all doubt ourselves sometimes. So you might be wondering what imposter syndrome feels like. Here are the most common characteristics of imposter syndrome:


Self-doubt Undervaluing contributions Attributing success to external factors Sabotaging self-success Setting unrealistic expectations Continuous fear of not living up to expectations Burnout



You matter, Sandy Bonney

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