Written by: Natalie Rotin, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
Often linked with perfectionism, Imposters Syndrome (which btw is not a diagnosable condition) is a major reason why women avoid failure.
The Oxford Dictionary defines it as –“the persistent inability to believe that one’s success is deserved or has been legitimately achieved as a result of one’s own efforts or skills.”
But I’m starting to realise that it’s not imposter syndrome itself that’s holding me back. It’s the reason WHY I feel like I’m an imposter, why I’ve always struggled with perfectionism.
The belief behind the belief which is:
“I’m not enough”
Since taking on a new role at work where I’m managing more complex ‘stuff’, well lets just say my anxiety is through the roof. No matter how much I try to prepare before meetings, I still feel like I’m walking into the lion’s den.
I second guess everything I say, what people are thinking, whether I sound intelligent enough. I’m literally hyperventilating by the time the meeting is over.
And when it happens in one area of my life, it starts to spill into other areas…
I’m not a good enough parent, I’m not worthy of really belonging, I’m not a good enough friend, sister, daughter.
If I believe I’m not enough, then I have to prove to others I’m enough by being nothing less than perfect.
Even after all the self-development work I’ve done and continue to do, the belief that I’m not enough still lurks behind all my other thoughts and feelings.
To be honest, I don’t really believe there’s a way to completely overcome it. It’s more like learning to manage it before it becomes as big as my granny knickers.
So, I thought I’d share with you the #1 thing that I’ve come back to over and over again. No matter how far we think we’ve come, sometimes the best thing we can do is go back to basics!
And this simple but effective exercise prompts me to think differently no matter what my inner jerk face is throwing at me.
My Mindful Triangle (known as the cognitive triangle in the clinical world)
The concept that our thoughts lead to feelings, our feelings lead to behaviours, and our behaviours continue to fuel our thoughts.
This triangle is a constant reminder that no matter what life throws at me, I have control over how I choose to respond. And this includes my thoughts.
It’s really hard trying to change the way we think so here’s a bonus tip for you:
Start with your behaviour instead of the thought or belief. Sometimes it’s just easier to fake it until you make it.
Do something that will make you feel good about yourself.
Put on some makeup and your best outfit, go for a fast-paced walk, treat a friend to coffee. It doesn't have to be big action. Just start to change the way you're behaving and watch how this changes your outlook and perspective.
We can’t get rid of our inner jerk face permanently. Being human means we can’t just hit delete on our thoughts. But we can manage them and stop them from determining who we become.
Download your Mindful Triangle Template!
Natalie Rotin, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Natalie is a leading speaker, writer, and goal-setting extraordinaire. Her degree in Health Science and experience as a Behaviour Change Coach led to her current role as mental health and continuous improvement expert in the Emergency Service sector. While by day she supports the wellbeing of frontline workers, by night she is a budding entrepreneur inspiring change and wholehearted living.
After many years of people-pleasing and struggling with her identity as a single parent, Nat established Made for Greatness; a business that fosters community and connection while helping ambitious women to build resilience, set healthy boundaries, and live an adventurous yet simple life.
Nat continues to inspire and empower others through her unique storytelling abilities and the creation of personal development tools and resources. She believes our circumstances don’t define us and that what we tend to see as failures has the potential to drive our success. Her mission: If we dare to be vulnerable, accepting that we are a work in progress, happiness and freedom can be found in the process of living, not just enjoyed as an end goal.