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The Fear Is My Homeboy® Blog

Do You Feel Like A Fraud?

May 10, 2017

Did you know this is an actual thing?

And it has an actual definition?

Impostor syndrome (also known as impostorphenomenon or fraud syndrome) is a concept describing high-achieving individuals who are marked by an inability to internalize their accomplishments and a persistent fear of being exposed as a “fraud”.

Um yes … ding ding ding ding ding.

This is me.

I can so relate.

I’ve had imposter syndrome most of my adult life. 

  • When I was killing my numbers as a sales person.
  • When I was Improvising at Second City.
  • When I was dating.
  • When I started my business.
  • When I’m on camera at events.
  • And every time I speak … write … create … or put myself out there. 

This feeling that you will all of the sudden be “found out” … that you aren’t good enough … and that that your special, unique, perspective is a fraud.

You with me?

I bet I’m not alone here. 

I really believe that you can have all the right stocks and bonds and investments, but nothing compares to the investment in YOU.

Finding ways to increase your value by doing more of what you love may just be the most important thing you ever freaking do.

  • Maybe you attend more seminars & training to get a raise.
  • Maybe you find a way to sell your art, that currently is only a hobby for you.
  • Maybe you find a way to take your side hustle of writing and turn it into actual published work.
  • Maybe you start teaching Facebook Live classes on healthy eating, because you have a passion for wellness.

And let me tell you … the second you go do this, you will run smack into fear.

The resistance will put you in a choke hold and knock the wind out of you.

And fear is a huge jerk.  He’s blunt, to the point, and does not hold back. 

He’ll ask you things like:

  • Do you have a license for that?
  • Who gave you the permission to do this?
  • Who said you can create this product and then sell it?

You catch my drift? Q’s like this.

It’s at this most vulnerable moment that self-doubt turns up the volume and your head starts spinning.

I know this feeling … it’s like your at a club standing right by the speakers and you can feel the bass vibrate your bones.

Just replace the bass with fear.

When I delivered my first keynote speech, I was so afraid the audience would all stand and start throwing things at me. I had dreams of people writing nasty comments on my forms that would say  things like, “You’re a fraud.  You don’t know jack?  Who are you to be up there? Who gave you the permission to do this?”  etc, etc, etc

It was awful.

I’ve since learned that this sort of thing … it’s the resistance and he is fears BFF … they want me to play small, to hide, to quit, give up, fly low.

Imposter Syndrom is in fears squad … it’s the real deal.

Here are 4 things you can do to deal with it and move forward:

  • Knowing what it is, and what to call it.  By understanding that imposter syndrome is an actual thing with an actual definition (above) studied by actual psychologists, helps you to realize that you are dealing with something real.
  • Realize you are not alone.  Did you know that the incredibly amazing Maya Angelou once shared that even though she’s written 11 books, each time she published she thought “‘Uh oh, they’re going to find out now. I’ve run a game on everybody, and they’re going to find me out.’”  I mean Maya Freaking Angelou had this syndrome … one of the most legendary bad asses of all time!  Most people doing anything amazing in the world probably suffer from some form of IS from time to time.=
  • Understand the why.  You often don’t believe that what is natural or easy for you, can offer any value to the world. In fact, the very act of being super good at something can lead you to discount its value. That said, when you are bad ass at something and work on it all the time, isn’t it sort of the point for our skill to look and feel natural?
  • Live with it.  Once you know that IS fear … that once you see head spinning self-doubt, you can call it what it is. Fear.  And Fear wants you to fail.  Hard.  So instead of run from it or fight it … invite it in for tea.  Dance with it, hang out with it, study it, hug it and make it your homeboy.

No matter how much I speak.

No matter how many rave reviews I get.

No matter how much love and support I have in my life.

I still feel like a fraud at times. 

The only difference, is I don’t let it stop me.

When he comes to visit, I say hello … invite him in for a drink … and then we get to work.

Made with Love,


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