WHO. GETS IT?
Anyone can experience imposter syndrome. Even some of the world’s most successful ladies have fessed up about their struggles with it, including our girl Emma Watson. “It’s almost like the better I do, the more my feeling of inadequacy actually increases, because I’m just going, ‘Any moment, someone’s going to find out I’m a total fraud, and that I don’t deserve any of what I’ve achieved,’” she said.
And Lady Gaga battles it, too. “I still sometimes feel like a loser kid in high school and I just have to pick myself up and tell myself that I’m a superstar every morning so that I can get through this day and be for my fans what they need for me to be,” she revealed in her documentary.
But it’s not just grown-ups in the workforce who experience imposter syndrome. It’s actually becoming increasingly common among teen girls – and it can actually hit much harder.
“While working with young women, I’ve observed that imposter syndrome can be more intense than for older adults, as it is a critical time where their personality, thought patterns and self-worth are all developing,” says Amy-Kate Johnson, psychologist
and founder of The Mindful Collective.
Claire Green, 16, from Canberra, has experienced the crushing effects of imposter syndrome first hand. Despite being a high achiever at school, she says she feels that she has to work extra hard to prove to herself and others that her success isn’t just a fluke. “I always feel like I have to go the extra mile and put in the extra hours’ work so that I believe that my mark was earned,” she says.
While Claire can act confident, inside she can be a ball of nerves. “I have my moments where I believe I don’t actually have the talents that others express in me or that I’m not nearly as wonderful as they think I am.”
The problem with imposter syndrome is it can lead to feeling alone, unsettled and like you’re never good enough. The good news is there are ways to break the cycle and stop feeling like a fraud!