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08: The Truth About Imposter Syndrome

Debbie Allen shares her thoughts on what is called “Imposter Syndrome”.

Does it exist? Is it actually a disorder? Is it even real? 

Debbie offers a dose of reality and some rants about this recently-revived topic.

Show Highlights:

  • The term “Imposter Syndrome” was coined by clinical psychologists, Pauline Clance and Suzanne Imes back in 1978 when they found that despite having adequate external evidence of accomplishments, people with IS remain confident and convinced that they don’t deserve the success that they have.
  • The term is making a resurgence lately, with many more people claiming they have IS.
  • This “syndrome” directly conflicts with Debbie’s teaching that “Success Is Easy”. 
  • If you believe that you’re not worthy of success, then you’re not going to get it.
  • A person that claims they have IS can use this as an excuse for self-sabotage.
  • Debbie describes some of the thoughts that are attributed to IS.
  • Learning a new business and making mistakes does not mean that you have IS, even while looking successful to others.
  • Who DOESN’T feel like an imposter at some point in their life? It’s a normal feeling but cannot be used as an excuse to fail.
  • People who say they have IS think success is good luck or good timing so they dismiss it as it if isn’t going to happen.
  • Remind yourself that you’re worthy.
  • Different levels of “Imposter Syndrome”, according to psychology:
  • The perfectionist
  • Superman or Superwoman
  • Natural genius
  • The soloist
  • The expert
  • We all struggle with confidence but that’s a part of life as we learn to grow.


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