WHO. GETS IT?

Girlfriend - - FEATURES -

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!

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