Are You Suffering from The Impostor Syndrome?

If you’re stepping up as an expert in your niche or ‘THE Niche Expert’ you might have days where you feel invincible and days where you think,

‘Who am I to do this?’

It’s quite normal because for some strange reason our subconscious is programmed to work against us and often tries to make us feel as though we’re useless!

If you find yourself falling into this whirlpool of exhausting despair on a regular basis you’re going to struggle to get the results you want.

I’ve found this lack of self belief to be much more of a show stopping issue for most people than learning how to do the stuff they need to do to market and sell their services and products online.

In my mind I’ve been calling it The Impostor Complex but after doing a little research for this article I’ve discovered that The Impostor Syndrome was first identified in 1978 by clinical psychologists, Pauline Clance and Suzanne Imes.

So sadly I’m probably not going to be noted in the psychology manuals as a genius but it’s relevant nonetheless.

In the one camp you have the people who wrinkle their nose up at the word ‘expert,’ and complain there are too many self proclaimed experts who don’t know what they’re doing.

These are the same people who might say,’ those who can’t do, teach.’

I’ve been guilty of saying something similar in the past I’m sure, but as a champion of budding and established Niche Experts I’ve realized how short sighted that was.

There are after all many gifted teachers in the world who were born to teach just as there are many gifted artists who would hate to teach and must only do.

My feeling on it is that if you’re inspired to teach then teach. It’s not an easy option and you’ll need to know your stuff but there’s no quicker way to improve than trying to show someone else how to do something.

In my work with clients and feedback from subscribers it’s become clear to me that true experts and professionals are in fact much more likely to undersell themselves and NOT have the courage to share their knowledge.

So yes there may be the odd ‘brazen’ expert who stands up to lead and might not have a C.V with 30 years of results on it.

But in this ever evolving online space and fast paced digital economy people with guts and vision are creating profitable and purposeful careers on the fly.

Most of us know a lot more than we give ourselves credit for.

But most won’t stand up and lead the way to share it with others.

Yes there’s a place to be the follower and the learner but that must be translated into leading and action if you’re to turn it into tangible benefits for yourself and others.

Brendon Burchard, the Founder of Expert Academy & Experts Industry Association talks about using your life story and experience to create your expert brand and believes that everyone has a story that can benefit others.

Next time you catch yourself feeling like an impostor, ponder on the following questions:

‘who else has my exact experience in this world?’
‘what do I know that others can benefit from?’
‘do I not owe it to myself and to others to share my gifts?’

And the most frightening question of all, ‘what if I really AM good enough?’

Some of the most talented performers in the world suffer from intense stage fright.
I think that’s probably the best example of truly gifted people feeling the effects of
The Impostor Syndrome.

Here’s a fascinating snippet of an interview with Andrea Bocelli, one of my favourite Opera Singers by Connie Chung with CNN: 


CHUNG: When you perform on stage, are you nervous?

BOCELLI: Oh, it’s difficult to explain how much. I have big, big stage fright.

CHUNG: Stage fright?

BOCELLI: And I can’t do anything, I think.

CHUNG: What do you mean you can’t do anything? You can’t do anything about it?

BOCELLI: Yes. I think I don’t want to use drugs or medicine, so nothing. The only way is to go on stage and to hope.

CHUNG: Do it, huh?

BOCELLI: Yes.

CHUNG: Then, do you settle down as soon as you go into your first song?

BOCELLI: No, not very much until at the end, when I — I have a difficulty. I feel fear.

CHUNG: You feel fear until the end?

BOCELLI: Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Not like at the beginning, but it’s difficult, yes.

So it looks as though no matter how gifted, experienced and expert like you are there’s
still a chance that sometimes you’ll suffer from feeling like a fraud or an impostor.

If Bocelli who is not only fear stricken but has also been blind since the age of 12, recorded one of the best selling singles of all time then what say you to stepping up and sharing your gifts?

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    Leave A Reply (2 comments So Far)


    1. Karin
      1 year ago

      I agree that we each need to go after what fits us best. Of course there will be fear. Of course there will be naysayers. But WE can overcome and, as you said, the best way to do that is to “Just Do It”. Take action.


      • rhenke
        1 year ago

        Thanks for stopping by Karin. Absolutely. I think the difference is whether we let it stop us or not and some struggle with this more than others.


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