How a Famous Robot Test Can Help You Beat Impostor Syndrome

How a Famous Robot Test Can Help You Beat Impostor Syndrome

Reader Comments (22)

  1. I taught at several universities in China for four years. I felt like an impostor every time I taught a Speaking Class. I used my wife’s lesson plans, and she coached me up well, and I could do well with a motivated class, but I still felt like a fake.

    After about a year, my boss found out I was a published author and turned me into an Advanced English Writing teacher. Not once did I feel like an impostor with that subject, even though I was constantly improving my lesson plans. The best curriculum I ever devised is the one I never got the chance to use.

    So like Sonia noted, learners do make the best teachers. Especially if they’re not drowning and flailing without a clue. This is also why I’ve found it much easier to blog about topics I haven’t completely mastered. We learn together.

  2. Some days I think that “Imposter Syndrome” is my middle name. . . Instead of asking who’s experienced it, maybe you should ask who HASN’T. . . Because I wouldn’t want to work with someone who claims never to have felt those doubts and insecurities. They wouldn’t be very human. . .

  3. Hey Kelton!

    I can say that I’ve suffered from this “Imposter Syndrome” you talk about here.

    Sometimes I take it as a sign that I need to keep learning, growing, and evolving. There are many new things and new information to learn all the time. It’s shocking how infinite information can seem. 🙂

    I’ve heard a self-development “guru” one time say …. “if you are not growing, you are dying” .. and I think that is true. When you are not learning and looking to grow, your life seems to become stagnated and super habitual (a 9 to 5 for 10+ years).

    Thank you for sharing this super interesting post man!

    Best regards! 😀

  4. All I do is teach all day long Kelton. Guest posts, Live broadcasts and I even share my experiences through blog comments. If you teach regularly, and keep learning, you will never feel like a fraud because the fraud feeling is simply a fear based on not being enough, and when you are being more than enough by learning and teaching, learning and teaching, you will feel clear, confident and whole. Even if someone comes along and calls you a fraud or imposter, you will realize that their criticism is a projection of self, and instead of fearing these pained folks, you will feel compassion for them. Or maybe they may annoy you, then the compassion LOL. Loving this post!


  5. Thanks for such an in-depth post on impostor syndrome Kelton. I wrote all your steps in my book, but I referred them to my own topic so I could really feel what you were talking about. This is awesome!

  6. I’ve only recently started as a freelance copywriter and ‘Impostor’ is basically my default feeling. But I definitely agree that constantly trying to learn more is helping. Everyone has to start somewhere

    • Over time it (usually) starts to sink in that you actually have something valuable to contribute and share. It’s a fascinating journey, even though not always so comfortable. 🙂

  7. Imposter syndrome deeply derailed my career search for a long time. I have always wanted to be a writer, editor, and storyteller, but I denied this passion in college. Instead of building up experience with writing internships, publications, etc, I focused on exploring my other passions in traveling and wildlife conservation. I have built up professional experiences in conservation research (as I always knew someone who knew someone, and the opportunities just rolled in.) However, I recently realized this was ultimately not the career I wanted to have. I began applying for writing and editing jobs this year, but always felt like an imposter as there was no “real” professional experience or publication credits on my resume. Even with my English degree, the countless hours I have spent writing and learning about the craft of storytelling on my own (because I love it!), the number of books I have read that have taught me how to be a better reader and writer, and the number of times in my research jobs I honed in my writing, editing, and communication skills – I was still afraid to say “yes I am a writer!” on my resume. Obviously I was not getting the jobs I desired. I felt doomed to being stuck in a career path I didn’t want because I falsely thought I lacked any experience.

    I decided to go to a career counselor in my funk. Even in telling her what I wanted to do, I could feel the anxiety creeping in. But she was supportive and helped me craft a resume that finally told my story and displayed my talents in writing. The headline on my resume now reads “Writer, Researcher, Editor”, and I could not be happier. Now that I have a document declaring myself in this way, I am in complete action mode towards my goals, and I feel the effects of this syndrome less and less everyday.

  8. I feel like an imposter all the time – glad to know I’m not alone! But part of that feeling is because I’m always learning, and the learning catapults me into new experiences and new opportunities. I still struggle, but learning to saw, “Hey, I’m new at this, too. Let’s do this together!”

  9. “you don’t have to have a Ph.D. in order to sound smart”

    I would add that having a Ph.D. does not make you smart unless you continue to find deep focus and repeated practice to continue that learning.

    Thank you, Kelton.

  10. I tend to swing between suffering really badly to going “well if I can do it, it must be easy, so it’s not even worth worrying about”. It’s a funny place to be, that rocky barren desert between the two! When pushed, I’d rather demonstrate self-deprecation in public, but I’ve got some other high-achieving friends who also suffer from imposter syndrome that I talk to when I’m feeling bad with it. Never underestimate the power of peers.

    • I agree that talking it out with you peers is a great way to be reminded that we all suffer from self-doubt at times, and that it’s totally normal, especially among the more successful. A little humility goes a long way. Thank for sharing this 🙂

  11. Such a great article. I love the reframe from imposter syndrome to imposter experience. It recognizes that it’s not a disease we carry with us, but rather a temporary experience based on current circumstance. The way I view it, if I’m stretching the boundaries of my current 100% confidence zone, imposter experience naturally is in the mix.

    This is something that so many experience yet we are often afraid to discuss it, which only contributes to the feeling of isolation.

    One thing that helps me is the process of Name it, Normalize it, Neutralize it.

    I try to call it out where I can, even in the moment. A few years ago I offered to help a mentor with his book launch and he accepted my offer. He had published two previous books, and is an in-demand speaker. My inner critic was off and running with “Why does he need your help?”

    When we got on a call to discuss ideas, the first thing I said was “I want to let you know I am having an imposter syndrome episode around this. That got him to open up and share one of his imposter experience moments.

    It really helps to bring these things out of the shadows. Thanks for this.

    • Thank you for sharing your own experience and process for beating it 🙂 I agree that it’s important to remember that even our mentors were once beginners going through the same periods of self-doubt.

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