Imposter Syndrome versus Mastery

There is a reason why imposter syndrome is a phenomenon.  That’s because people in the most outstanding positions of power or success are no more intelligent than us.  In other words, no matter our circumstances, we can achieve just as great or even greater material or socioeconomic status than those we admire.  And this holds true even if we have severe disabilities or the most challenging life stories.

The older I get, the more I realize I have just as much to contribute as the senior people in my company and our wealthy clients.  In other words, we all have more going for us than we realize.  And the more I observe people, the more I see how much we are alike.  Whether we have severe disabilities or run a global enterprise, we are all quite similar in foibles and strengths—and, I’d argue, even in potential.  There’s no black magic to achieving success, for instance.  It just takes hard work, skill acquisition, persistence, and a firm belief that we have what it takes.  And yes, we all have what it takes.

I worked in a disability employment shelter, so I felt like an extreme imposter attending the university.  Even though I was the top student in my discipline and won a silver medal for academic performance,  I still felt like I didn’t meet the measure.  But I don’t feel that way now.  That’s because I realize that anything is possible for anyone.  The sky is the limit if we genuinely wish to fly.  And whatever circumstance or self-limiting factor we may face, we can achieve beyond our wildest aims.

With that said, here are three ways to overcome imposter syndrome, according to Ask AI:

Set impossible goals, complete with milestones.  Okay, so Ask AI said to set realistic goals.  I’m not a big fan of “realistic.” I saw a stocks and options trader book outlining the psychology of trader success.  According to the book, the state of mind for success requires we believe anything is possible and perceive all limitations as challenges readily overcome.  So, the book permits us to set impossible goals.  After all, impossible goals are exciting to strive for, especially when we make great progress.  Nothing is truly impossible.

Continually invest in self-development and education.  Take nonstop education.  Start learning at night, in the morning—throughout the day.  I can’t stress this enough.  Continuous learning is the magic elixir to success.  So, push ourselves to learn at every opportunity.  And we’ll gain magnificently.  Learning is like watering a plant: a single day without water, the plant starts to die.  But water it every day, and it’ll bloom into a lush, leafy green plant with vibrant flowers.  And I’m banking on lifelong learning flourishing all of us.  There are no imposters here.

See failures as learning opportunities.  Record our wins and successes.  This record is our playbook.  And view our failures as learning opportunities.  Extract the lessons.  And watch us thrive with future accomplishments.  If I saw my failures as dead ends, I’d likely be living in a group home.  And although I bombed as a TA, I believe I can still succeed as an instructor or a professor.  So, never let failure stop us from pursuing our dreams.  Failures are just the friction that occurs when we polish ourselves, according to Stoic philosophy.  After all, every diamond had to be dug from the dirt.

So, that’s how to beat imposter syndrome.  We aren’t imposters.  We are all capable of achieving our dreams.  And there are no exceptions.  So, reach higher than the stars.  We are capable of achieving it all.