Advice (Opinions) for Overcoming Imposter Syndrome in Higher Education
According to the dictionary, impostor syndrome is defined as “persistent disbelief that one’s success is due or rightfully achieved as a result of one’s efforts or skill.” increase. In other words, impostor syndrome is the feeling that you know you are an impostor and that eventually others will figure it out as well.
I never heard the term when I was in graduate school, but I certainly experienced it. As, I felt like a cheater. While I keep my head above water and struggle to keep up with everyone, everyone else seems to have the professional education and experience to better prepare for graduate school. I didn’t feel like I belonged and thought it was only a matter of time before someone else realized the same thing and kicked me out of the program. I learned the term “impostor syndrome” which perfectly describes what I experienced.
The fear of impersonation is especially true for people with historically marginalized identities, and even more so for those with intersecting identities. Changes are happening to better support academia, but it’s happening very slowly and not without resistance. So how do we start fighting the fear of impersonation? You can find useful tools and mechanisms. Those who have experienced such horrors once are likely to experience them again throughout their careers. Even if you need to get through the worst imposter syndrome days, having a set of tools can help.
- Be confident. This is one of the best ways to tackle impostor syndrome.what can help you build confidence? It may be a small thing, it may be a big thing, but even a small step can help you feel more confident and less likely to experience the fear of scammers. there is no. For me, it started with asking questions at seminars. It was scary at first, but gradually I realized that the quality of my questions and the professor’s questions were similar, and I gained confidence.
- Ask a friend (or family member) to help you out a little. When we are in our emotions, it is difficult to use logic to get out of them. So share your worries and fears with someone you trust. They usually see angles you can’t see and help you see that you’re not an imposter and you’re really a great person. . In fact, if they don’t have a higher education, they’re more likely to see your win. This will increase your confidence and reduce your fear of scammers.
- training. Practice builds your confidence. Find someone you trust to practice with. Worried about upcoming interviews? If you have someone you know and trust, or a career development professional, do a dry run with that person. Curious about upcoming dissertation reviews or work talks? Again, practice. If the thought of practicing with others makes you more nervous, start by practicing aloud alone. Then try it with someone you are comfortable with who you know won’t strain you.
- learning. Perhaps your imposter fear comes from the unknown. Fear and anxiety often arise from not knowing something. In grad school and college, there are many things that are not well known or discussed. So how can you learn about them? Talk to people who have experienced them (bonus points for growing your network too, which is always a good thing). Follow to see threads and discussions on various issues and ideas. Talk to someone you know who has gone through the stage you are concerned about.
- problem solving. Do certain situations make you feel more like an impostor? If so, consider what you can do to make those situations less scary and stressful. For example, if you’re worried about submitting your dissertation, set a time of your day to be your best self. If you are a morning person, schedule an early morning hour. If you’re a night owl, look for afternoon availability. Choose clothes that make you feel good. Some things may be completely out of your control, but controlling what you can do might make a difference.
- Don’t compare yourself to others. Even though we are at the same career stage, we are all on different paths. Some disciplines are fast-paced, and work may be published sooner. Other fields have very slow timelines and may take longer to publish. Some people have to teach at graduate school, which reduces the amount of time they can devote to research. Others have families to care for and different levels of personal demands. Comparing yourself to others only creates an inferiority complex.
- Find a trusted mentor. Anyone can be a mentor. They could be your advisors, committee members, colleagues, or people you haven’t met yet. Good mentors are important and help you grow. They don’t make you feel bad about yourself. It is good to have multiple mentors for various reasons, such as having a good support system and being able to gain diverse perspectives. Additionally, they will point out why you belong and that you are not impostor.
- nevertheless succeed. Chances are, perhaps at some point someone said something to you that made you feel less than a star or as if you didn’t belong. By being successful, you are proving them wrong. Every successful move you’ve made and achievements you’ve achieved proves it. Using that evidence to propel yourself forward and fight your inner fear is a perfectly valid thing to do. Please use it.
- Keep the outcome document or folder. Track your achievements, big and small. If you feel yourself a scammer, please visit again. Your fears won’t go away completely, but hopefully, you’ll find yourself smart and skilled. Plus, it helps you write resumes and resumes when you need them. And you never know: one student’s assessment that says you’re a bee’s knee might be something you need to read on a bad day.
- Seek professional help. Getting mental health support isn’t always easy, but it’s often essential. Find out what your health insurance covers and find the right therapist or psychiatrist. Get outside support from friends and family when looking for a therapist or psychiatrist. Because finding the right person can itself be a burden. Outside help may be needed, but there is nothing wrong with seeking help from a trained professional.
Last but not least, remember that you are smart and capable. They saw something special in you, so they accepted your participation in the program or hired you. If you were a cheater, you wouldn’t be who you are today. You are a skilled and talented person who can bring your own unique experience and expertise to whatever you do. you belong you are not a scammer.