May 23, 2019
Episode 57 of The Teaching Space Podcast explores imposter syndrome.
“The imposter syndrome is a psychological term referring to a pattern of behavior where people doubt their accomplishments and have a persistent, often internalized fear of being exposed as a fraud.” (Psychology Today, 2018).
I experience imposter syndrome ALL THE TIME. This often comes as a surprise to people as I present as an extroverted person positive about their broad skill set. I’m actually an introvert (I get my energy from being quiet and on my own). I have a broad set of skills, but as a result, I usually feel I lack expertise in anything; "jack of all trades, master of none".
I recently signed up for a series of lunchtime lectures on conducting research because it’s something I’m interested in, but know little about. At the start of the first session, the lecturer asked us all to explain why we came to the session. I was in a room full of Master’s and PhD students... I’m not working towards, nor do I have a Master’s or a PhD... so why was I there? Did I have a right to be there? Serious imposter syndrome alert.
Ironically, it turned out I was also the only person in the room who had published anything. While my book, The Productive Teacher, might not be based my own officially documented academic research, it’s mine, and it’s published. I have also written multiple articles for industry journals. So on this occasion, I was ok. But it doesn’t always work out that well for me. Can you relate?
You’ll notice the title of this episode refers to “managing” imposter syndrome. Unfortunately, you probably cannot make it disappear. However, I believe you can manage it if you know the situations that trigger you. Here are examples you might relate to:
Here are a few ways you can try to manage imposter syndrome:
That’s all from me today, before I go, I have one small ask. Please sign up for my weekly email newsletter, The Teaching Space Extra. It includes access to my free resource library, as well as lots of great reading recommendations and information about productivity, teaching and tech. Hop over to theteachingspace.com/tts-extra to sign up.