This Mindset Block Prevents Smart, Talented Women From Having The Career They Want

September 2, 2021

It’s No Big Deal

I’m Not As Good As People Think

If People Really Knew Me…

If you’ve ever felt like a fraud you could be stuck in an imposter mindset. As a result of this mindset you short change yourself and dismiss your accomplishments as not a big deal. Part of you knows you are doing well but those moments don’t last.

An imposter mindset is a common block that prevents smart, talented and hardworking women from having the career they want. Here’s how this happens:

1. When you have an imposter mindset you go through life with a negative impression of yourself and that makes you reluctant to claim credit for what you do. You might stall or avoid applying for next level jobs or promotions because you don’t feel qualified or ready yet. The cost of this belief system is high because your continued growth depends on you believing in and making a case for the value that you bring.

2. An imposter mindset undercuts your ability to rise because it compels you to overwork. Your overworking feeds into the feelings of being a fraud: I have to work harder than everyone else just to be here. Overworking also requires a lot of bandwidth. It’s hard to feel mentally prepared to take risks and push forward when you’re exhausted.

3. An imposter syndrome keeps you stuck in “this before that” thinking. We think, if I want to do this, I’d better get a PhD in it first. It’s exactly this belief system that convinces us we need more qualifications as a form of “permission” to do our work. It gets in the way of self-trust that we are capable of doing it even if we aren’t yet perfectly qualified.

We don’t intentionally bring an imposter mindset to life—but we do have a choice about whether to continue to buy into it. Awareness is half the battle. You can’t change what you don’t know is there. Then the way forward is by working on self-trust. Our ability to rise depends on knowing the value that we bring and trusting ourselves to show up and let it rip.