Lie of the Imposter Complex #7: You’re Not Ready

Lie #7 of the Imposter Complex is a seductive and tricky beast because it seems rational.

It says you’re not ready… yet.

(Not ready for what? Oh, any old thing…)

Here, the Imposter Complex is finally giving you a little slack. (And we call it Imposter Complex, not imposter syndrome for a very good reason.)

It’s acting all logical by pointing to the fact that you MAY be ready ONE day… that day’s just not today. Yup. It’s giving you slack, all right.

Just enough slack in the rope to tangle yourself into the loop of inspiration -> preparation -> frustration -> procrastination-> inspiration…

It disguises itself as the oh-so-logical argument that you just need a little more — experience, education, time, whatever.

Maybe you’ll feel ready when you get that degree. Or put another 10 years under your belt. Or… or… or.

I see this crop up a lot with coaches who feel like they need to get another certification or put in some more hours coaching for free before they’re ready to charge for their services…

With entrepreneurs who feel like they need to buy another course, work with another coach, do another beta test before they launch their big thing…

With writers who need another draft, another writing group, another editor, another opinion before they start shopping their book…

How Lie #7 might manifest for you

Depending on which of the six behavioural traits of the Imposter Complex you most often experience, you might find yourself giving in to the allure of not ready because of different things:

If you’re a people-pleaser, you’re already prone to getting everyone’s opinion about your work (ie: Lie #6) and therefore you’ll take it to heart if even one person suggests you aren’t ready.

If you have leaky boundaries, you may get swept along with the crowd. If you see friends and colleagues getting another certification, buying another course, working with a new coach, you may feel compelled to do the same.

If you tend to compare, you’ll find plenty of examples of people who were more ready to prove your hypothesis that you’re not ready.

If you’re a perfectionist, well. You’ll never be ready because things will never be absolutely perfect.

If you’re a procrastinator, telling yourself that you’re not ready is a GREAT excuse not to actually do the thing. It feels like you’re still working toward your goal… Even when the goal is as far away as ever.

If you tend to diminish, this is probably also familiar territory for you, because you only ever see your shortcomings, not how far you’ve come.

Two things:

As you sit down to write the book, launch the product, step up to the mic, think about how everything you have ever made, delivered, sold, created, drafted, crafted, survived, healed, and done is coming together. Right here and now. For this very purpose. For this very moment.


No one was ever fully ready. For anything.

Do it. You’re ready enough.

(HEYYYY!! Someone should do a podcast called Ready Enough. Oh wait…I did!)


Where I pull back the curtain on five shifts to start raising voices, rates, and hands all while being the kind, congruent, and authentic leader I know you to be. REGISTER HERE

Originally published at on May 19, 2020.



Step into your Starring Role: Leadership Coach, TEDx Speaker on #ImpostorComplex. Book’s coming…soooooon.

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Tanya Geisler

Step into your Starring Role: Leadership Coach, TEDx Speaker on #ImpostorComplex. Book’s coming…soooooon.