During a recent mastermind session, the topic of imposter syndrome came up. When you google this topic, hundreds of articles will come up. It's no doubt a real thing, that one time or another we've all dealt with, and will continue to deal with. Identifying it isn't the challenge, it's getting to the root of it that poses a problem.
A whole host of factors can "cause" it, especially as it relates to building your business and creating success. I've found that in my journey and through coaching my clients, the root has been one common theme.
Defining your success by another persons standard.
Be it society as a whole, or your favorite influencer on IG, the worst thing you can do is compare your journey to another persons set of rules.
It's all too familiar, scrolling through social media, jumping from timeline to timeline etc. You weren't even thinking about said person, or said thing -- and now all of the sudden you are on the verge of a pity party, because everything is coming together for everyone else. Everyone is "living their best life." Yet for you, now yours appears to be falling or short, or even worse falling apart. But that's just it. They are living, their life.
Building your business, and creating your ideal life -- is about you.
It's not about societal trends, and it's definitely not about what you see other people doing. It's about you. Your vision. Your goals. Your definition of success. It's something you have to build, and it's something you have to protect.
Imposter syndrome creeps in when you let your guard down. When you allow yourself to get distracted and lose focus of what's truly important. Too much time focused externally, will lead you right onto someones timeline, falling down the rabbit whole of comparison. And if we are being honest, it's a losing battle comparing your real life to another persons carefully crafted and curated feed.
It's a distraction that you do not need. We always hear that "comparison is the thief of joy". But in my experience, distraction comes first.
When you are busy minding your own business, rooted in your purpose and carrying out your dreams -- you don't get distracted by someone else doing the same. Distraction doesn't just diminish your progress and accomplishments. If you aren't careful it will
lead you to sharing a vision with people who can't see beyond tomorrow,
get you caught up listening to people comfortable living their life, and unable to give you the space to be comfortable living out yours.
and, it will have you procrastinating in the name of fear and/or perfectionism.
At the end of the day, trying to force your vision, into the box that is "society's version of success" is a waste of time.
Your vision and execution must resonate with you, or else it will never work. No where does it say you are required to get buy-in from your parents. No where is it necessary for your friends to support you, buy from you or even understand you. The only way around this imposter syndrome thing, is to focus on you.
Sure you'll have some wins, but the true potential of your success, is waiting for you shift the focus back to you.
The first step in redirecting your focus, is to tune in; figure out who you are, who you were created to serve, the gifts you have to share, the legacy you want to leave and how you want to live your life for you.
“When we spend our lives waiting until we’re perfect or bulletproof before we walk into the arena, we ultimately sacrifice relationships and opportunities that may not be recoverable, we squander our precious time, and we turn our backs on our gifts, those unique contributions that only we can make. Perfect and bulletproof are seductive, but they don’t exist in the human experience.— Brené Brown,
Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead