Hiding in Plain Sight?

Have you ever felt like everyone around you was achieving more than you? Do people compliment you on your achievements yet you don’t feel like they are deserved? You may be one of the many people who experiences Imposter Syndrome.

Imposter syndrome is characterized by those who are unable to own their own accomplishments and are in constant fear of being exposed as a fraud. Many people afflicted with Imposter Syndrome feel they are unworthy of whatever position they have attained and that or unworthy of their position.

A 1978 study found that the phenomenon was unequally common in high-achieving women. Therapeutic interventions were statistically successful in allowing such women to be aware of their achievements and to internalize their success.

The American Psychological Association has an excellent piece on the feelings of being fraudulent. Their recommendations for moving past it are:

Talking to mentors

Recognizing expertise

Remembering what you do well

Realizing no one is perfect

Changing your Thinking

Talking to someone who can help

In today’s results driven work society, there are huge pressures to succeed. If you feel like you have only achieved your position today based on luck, you may need to look inward and accept you are actually an intelligent person who works hard.

For more in depth reading on the coping mechanisms, check out the above linked articles.

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About the Author:


Cognitive Performance Group, LLC is a woman-owned small business with offices in Orlando, Florida, and Cleveland, Ohio. It was founded by Dr. Karol G. Ross, Jennifer K. Phillips, and William A. Ross. The three CPG Principals developed the concept for a company to support cognitive performance improvement in industry and government. (more...)

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