By Amelia Beattie, Chief Executive of Liberty Two Degrees
As a woman working in business, you may have experienced feelings of self-doubt, inadequacy, and the fear of being exposed as not having all the answers. These feelings are often associated with what is known as ‘imposter syndrome’ which can hold you back from achieving your goals and reaching your full potential – it can hold you back from believing in yourself.
But what if I told you that there is a way to counter these feelings of self-doubt and take control of your career? What if I told you that the antidote to imposter syndrome is a growth mindset? By adopting a growth mindset, you can recognise that your abilities and intelligence can be developed through focus, positive language, dedication, and persistence.
The voice of imposter syndrome in your head (often put there by those who doubt you) may tell you that you are not good enough, that you don’t have the skills or knowledge to succeed. However, the voice of the growth mindset says, “I am growing and haven’t fully mastered it, yet.” Adding the word ‘yet’ to your vocabulary can be a powerful tool in overcoming imposter syndrome. It acknowledges that you may not have all the answers or skills right now, but you are capable of learning and growing all the time.
For example, if you have a fear of public speaking, the imposter syndrome voice might say, “I’m not a good speaker. I can’t give a presentation.” But the growth mindset voice says, “I’m not an excellent speaker yet. But with practice and preparation, I am improving my skills and becoming a confident speaker.”
The key to adopting a growth mindset is to focus on the process of learning and growth rather than the outcome, and to think of yourself being in the present. Instead of believing that your abilities and intelligence are fixed, a growth mindset acknowledges that you are developing and improving all the time. This mindset empowers you to take risks, learn from failures, and embrace challenges as opportunities to grow.
To give yourself the best chance of success for the ‘yet’, I invite you to embrace the 3P’s: Prepare, Participate, and Be Present.
Prepare: Preparation is key to building confidence and overcoming imposter syndrome. Whether it’s a presentation, a meeting, or a project, take the time to research, practice, and rehearse. Break down the task into smaller, manageable steps and focus on making progress rather than achieving perfection.
Participate: Don’t shy away from opportunities to speak, learn, and grow. Participate in meetings, workshops, conferences, and networking events. Surround yourself with people who support and encourage your growth and seek out mentors who can provide guidance and feedback.
Be Present: When you are in a meeting, be present. Don’t let your mind wander elsewhere. Instead, focus on the task at hand and trust in your ability to contribute, learn and grow all the time.
Remember, the journey towards success is not a straight line – it has meaningful twists and turns. There will be big and small wins and successes, and setbacks and challenges along the way, but a growth mindset can help you embrace these to achieve your goals. By embracing the power of ‘yet’ you can take control of your growth and your future to realise your full potential and make a meaningful contribution to society.
Dear woman and friend in business, you are overcoming imposter syndrome and achieving your goals. By adopting a growth mindset and embracing the power of ‘yet’ you are developing your skills and intelligence over time. Use the 3P’s to be ready for the ‘yet’ and take control of where you are going. Remember, you are already achieving great things, so don’t let anything hold you back. The best is yet to come – I am so proud of being part of experiencing the difference you are making to the wider community you serve.