This is session number 017 of the Influence Psychology and Persuasion podcast. This show is all about understanding the impostor syndrome and how it affects us. If you don't know already, the impostor syndrome is a feeling that we get whenever we feel not worthy.These impostor feelings can be subdivided into three separate categories.
The first is basically feeling like a fake. You know you have a little niggling inside that you're about to be found out by someone. Perhaps you're surrounded by others who you feel are more knowledgeable or skilled in certain areas, and you feel your time will come up very soon. Statements from people who feel like this would be things like "I just give the impression that I'm way more competent than I am" or even "I know that one day I'll be found out that I lacked the knowledge that those around me have".
The second part is the inability to own success and to wrap it up as just being lucky. This is something that I'm sure all of us have done at one time or another. Someone may be praising a success or something that we've achieved, only for us to announce it as a fluke or that the competition at that time wasn't up to par either.
The last category is fairly similar to the second and this is also discounting success. This is where a person really downplays the successes that they have had. "I don't know why you're making a fuss" or " anybody could have done it".
Different variations of impostor syndrome will show for most people during their lifetime in many different areas or situations. It's extremely common though with highly achieving, highly successful people this is what separates impostor syndrome from simply low self-esteem. Impostor syndrome comes from the discrepancy of big achievements and the person not taking ownership or playing down the result.