When people are struggling with confidence, they often also struggle to take action.
It’s something I see over and over again in my work on the Imposter Complex. (And while many people say “imposter syndrome,” this is why I use Imposter Complex instead.)
People think that confidence creates action.
Action creates confidence.
Unshakeable Confidence isn’t something you HAVE. It’s something you cultivate, practice, and devote yourself to.
And when you practice it? You become FAR more resilient to the Imposter Complex…
One could argue that struggling with Imposter Complex is a crisis of confidence. (And while many people call it “imposter syndrome,” this is why I use Imposter Complex instead.)
Therefore, the antidote, naturally, would seem to be Unshakable Confidence.
But what does that actually mean?
Unshakeable Confidence is the kind of confidence that you can count on and that won’t quit you.
It’s not about never having your confidence waver.
To me, Unshakeable Confidence is a three-legged stool, and those three legs are Integrity, Presence, and Action.
Because the Imposter Complex has three main goals: to keep us doubting…
When people are struggling with the Imposter Complex, I believe what they’re really looking for is confidence — unshakeable confidence that can carry them through any situation.
Like my friend Staci Jordan Shelton says: “don’t pray for money. Pray for CONFIDENCE.”
The kind of confidence that you can count on and that won’t quit you.
It’s not about never having your confidence waver — nuh uh.
Unshakeable confidence isn’t something you HAVE. It’s something you cultivate, practice, and devote yourself to.
And when you practice it? …
I’ve been sharing how the Imposter Complex wants to keep you alone, isolated, and doubting your capacity. (And by the way, here is why I’m using “Imposter Complex” instead of “Imposter Syndrome.”) Separately felt, they are hard to be with. Compounded, they have the effect of keeping you out of action, which, unsurprisingly, is the Imposter Complex’s third main objective.
Keeping you out of action. Even (especially) the action you want to take. The action that will get you closer to your desires. The action that will prove to you that your tenacity is no joke. The action that will…
We’ve established that the Imposter Complex is trying to keep you alone and isolated. (By the way, here is why I say Imposter Complex instead of Imposter Syndrome.)
But, ironically, that objective rarely works alone; more often, it interplays with the second objective: The Imposter Complex wants you to doubt your capacity.
Which sounds like:
“I’ve never done xyz, so I can’t do xyz.”
“I just got lucky with that win.”
“They’re just being nice when they tell me I did a fabulous job.”
“I don’t have anything useful to add to the conversation.”
“I’m not ready yet.”
Of the three primary objectives of the Imposter Complex, the one that seems to cause us the most suffering individually and collectively is this:
The Imposter Complex wants to keep you alone and isolated.
The other two objectives: keeping you out of action + doubting your capacity are also exceedingly damaging, to be certain, in that they preclude you from getting your brilliance out into the world. On the stage it deserves. That YOU deserve. …
Quick question: If you landed here by googling “how to stop procrastinating” were you… avoiding something else you were supposed to be doing?
Or were you googling because you were caught (or nearly caught) procrastinating on something important recently?
It’s OK if you were; I’m not going to lecture you! Whatever prompted you to look for more information about how to stop procrastinating, I want you to know: you’re not alone.
Especially if you also suffer from the Imposter Complex. ( Around here we say Imposter Complex instead of imposter syndrome, and here’s why.)
Overcoming perfectionism can be a tricky nut to crack when perfection is so idolized by our Western culture.
We are constantly bombarded with images of what perfect looks like — even if it is mostly completely unattainable — and we internalize it from a young age.
(And a lot of those images are mired in capitalism, white supremacy, and patriarchy, which puts that mythical vision of perfection even further out of reach for many of us.)
Boundaries are a beautiful thing. But if you’re wondering how to set some boundaries, it’s a fair guess yours mayyyyy have become leaky. And when we have leaky boundaries, we tend to do things out of obligation (which can breed resentment), we tend to overshare information about ourselves, and we tend to give greater weight to others’ opinions over our own.
In short, it’s hard to tell where we end and someone else begins.
And if you feel like an imposter — like you’re not good enough, or special enough, or important enough to have strong boundaries — it’s likely…
In my career, I have talked to a lot of people about comparison — how to stop comparing yourself to others, why it matters, and how we go about transforming it.
Compulsive comparison is a stumbling block for so many — especially those of us who struggle with the Imposter Complex (here’s why I say Imposter Complex instead of imposter syndrome).
So let’s talk about how comparison works — and how to stop comparing yourself to others.