15 ways of overcoming imposter syndrome

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If you’re looking for tips to learn how to overcome imposter syndrome, or you’d like to figure out what to say to someone with imposter syndrome, the strategies below are helpful.

1. Focus on the facts 

People who fall victim to imposter syndrome tend to think emotionally. They feel they are not good enough and assume it must be true. If this sounds like you, try to focus on the facts. Think about what you bring to the relationship instead of worrying about falling short.

man sitting on chair

2. Use affirmations

When you struggle with imposter disorder, it’s easy to get stuck in a pattern of negative thinking. Break this cycle by using daily affirmations, and you’ll find that you stop doubting love in relationships.

In fact, research has shown that self-affirmations increase self-esteem, which can help you to overcome imposter syndrome symptoms.

Self-affirmations can include:

  • Reminding yourself how kind you are.
  • Thinking about past successes.
  • Focusing on your positive qualities.

3. Don’t compare yourself to others

There is no logic in comparing yourself to others, especially if you have an imposter syndrome relationship. You can always find someone who seems superior to you in some way, but comparing will make your feelings of inadequacy worse.

We all have strengths and weaknesses, and chances are that other people also look at you and admire your strengths.


4. Accept compliments

If you feel like a fraud in your relationship, it can be difficult to accept compliments from your partner. You may feel you don’t deserve the compliment, but take the time to accept it. Despite what your insecurities are telling you, the compliment is probably genuine.

At the same time, if you’re trying to figure out how to help someone with imposter syndrome, make an intentional effort to give genuine compliments to your partner, as this will reinforce their positive qualities. 

5. Talk to your partner

Conversation with your partner can ease some of the insecurities surrounding imposter syndrome. Without a discussion, they may not understand your insecure behavior and need for constant reassurance, but having a discussion helps them to understand where you’re coming from and begin to offer support.

Man and woman talking to each other

6. Think about the consequences of your behavior

Take some time to stop and think about how imposter syndrome negatively affects your relationship. Are you and your significant other constantly fighting? Do you emotionally withdraw instead of allowing them to get close?

Recognizing that your behavior has consequences can provide you with the motivation you need to change your thinking.

7. Learn to identify your triggers

If you’re struggling with feelings of inadequacy in your relationship, chances are that there are certain situations or people that trigger these feelings. Maybe social media is a trigger for you, or perhaps being around that toxic family member makes you start to question your worth.

Make an intentional effort to identify your triggers. Once you recognize what they are, you can start to limit them so you can heal. 

8. Reach out to others

Most of the time, we are way harder on ourselves than others, so it can be beneficial to talk to a trusted friend or family member about your insecurities and feelings of inadequacy. A close friend can offer a more rational viewpoint and put things into perspective for you.

9. Write down the things you love about yourself

At its core, imposter syndrome is a problem with low self-confidence. When you struggle with these feelings in your relationship, you become fixated on the areas where you fall short. Counter this behavior by writing down everything you love about yourself.

When feelings of self-doubt start to creep in, turn to your list for some reassurance.

10. Replace negative thoughts

Once you recognize that some of your thoughts are simply a result of imposter syndrome, you can begin to identify when these thoughts are occurring and replace them with a different thought.

For instance, when you start to think that you are not good enough for your partner, stop this train of thought and give yourself a positive affirmation, such as, “I am a loyal partner.”

Watch this video by memory expert Anthony Metivier to learn about the two questions that can help silence your negative thoughts:

 

11. Practice self-care

People with imposter syndrome tend to be high achievers and may think they never deserve a break. Stop being so hard on yourself, and take time for rest, recovery, and doing things you enjoy.

You’ll develop a healthier mindset when you care for yourself and tend to your own needs.


12. Forgive yourself

Feelings of imposter syndrome tend to creep in when we make mistakes. Something as small as forgetting to take the trash out can make you feel like you have failed in your relationship. Instead of beating yourself up, remind yourself that everyone makes mistakes and is okay.


13. Let go of the need for perfection

You’ve probably heard it before, but it still rings true: no one is perfect. Living with imposter syndrome means that you pressure yourself to be perfect at all times. When you inevitably fall short, you feel like a fraud.

Let go of the need for perfection and recognize that you and your significant other are growing and learning together. There will be highs and lows, but the relationship will shape you along the way, and you’ll learn from your mistakes.


14. Face your fears 

Living with imposter syndrome in relationships can make you fear being intimate with your partner. You may emotionally withdraw because you’re afraid if you get too close to someone, they will recognize that you’re a fraud.

Instead of withdrawing, face your fear and open up to your partner. Chances are, you’ll recognize that they still accept you.

15. Seek therapy 

Sometimes, it can be challenging to overcome imposter syndrome on your own. If you have unresolved childhood trauma or an untreated mental health condition, like depression, that occurs alongside imposter syndrome, working with a therapist can provide you with the support you need to heal.

Man having session with therapist

In some cases, imposter syndrome in relationships is a symptom of a more significant problem that requires professional intervention.

Realize your self-worth

Imposter syndrome in relationships can make you feel like you don’t deserve your partner’s love. This can make it difficult to find happiness because you’ll constantly feel anxious, insecure, and unworthy. Fortunately, you can learn how to overcome imposter syndrome.

If you’ve tried several strategies to alleviate imposter syndrome and still find that it negatively affects your relationships, you may benefit from reaching out for professional intervention.

Therapy for imposter syndrome can teach you coping strategies for managing feelings of self-doubt and help you to change your thinking patterns so that you do not view yourself so negatively.

Ultimately, imposter syndrome treatment can help you have healthier relationships, as you will not be as insecure about your partner leaving you and won’t settle for abusive or one-sided relationships.

Seeking treatment allows you to view yourself more positively so you can lead a more fulfilling life.

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