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Navigating self-doubt at work? Learn tips to boost confidence, celebrate wins, and support peers. Let's conquer impostor feelings together.
Navigating self-doubt at work? Learn tips to boost confidence, celebrate wins, and support peers. Let’s conquer impostor feelings together.
You are a powerful female leader, respected for your leadership and recognized for your expertise across the organization. But deep inside, you feel your growth is purely by chance and that you are not as competent as others. You feel you do not deserve this status or recognition.
Does this ring a bell? Sounds like a page out of your life?
This stark contrast between external reality and your own perception is a classic case of Impostor syndrome. Women with impostor syndrome are overly critical of their performance and are constantly looking for external validation.
It is common to feel a sense of doubt when starting a new role or opportunity. Self-doubt and self-criticism aren’t qualities unique to women. Other genders also go through these, but it is more prevalent in women, especially those who belong to underrepresented communities.
As per the KPMG study, in 2022, 75% of female executives across industries have experienced impostor syndrome in their careers.
Impostor syndrome is doubting your abilities and feeling undeserving of success. Overcoming it involves self-affirmation, embracing achievements, and fostering a supportive environment.
The most familiar style of leadership in many corporations is the powerful, outspoken, masculine leader radiating confidence and competence. Strong female leaders are still a minority in most organizations. Hence, women have very few role models they can look up to.
This leads to a fear of walking down a new path on their own, accompanied by a fear of standing out and being judged for it. This amplifies the insecurity in them and makes them withdraw into safer zones.
Read more: It’s 2020, Isn’t It Time We Had Women Role Models Who Also Head IITs?
Despite outstanding academic and professional accomplishments, women consistently underestimate their abilities and worth. This is due to societal and cultural norms and conditioning over the years.
Girls, in their formative years, are encouraged to underplay their skills and practice humility. They develop the fear of standing out in a crowd or speaking up for themselves early on in their lives.
Read more: 5 Tips To Build Your Confidence And Achieve All That You Want
Impostor syndrome may be a universal problem. But systemic sexism has a major role to play in fuelling this condition. If a woman has ideas or points to make in a conversation but never gets the chance to voice her ideas or her ideas are ignored, it leads her to doubt her skills, which snowballs into questions of self-worth and dignity.
Gender stereotyping has a far-lasting impact on a woman’s professional growth than one can contemplate.
Read more: 4 Unconscious Biases In The Workplace You Need To Stop In India!
It is crucial for women to know that they are not alone in this struggle. Millions of women worldwide across a spectrum of professions, educational qualifications, ages, races, and ethnic and cultural backgrounds have experienced impostor syndrome in their lives.
There is a lot of focus on advising women on how to fix this problem. Rather than telling women impostor syndrome is caused by a lack of confidence, we need to analyse and improve the ecosystem that we inhabit.
The answer to overcoming impostor syndrome is not to fix individuals, but to create an environment that fosters diverse leadership styles and one where racial, ethnic, and gender identities are respected and given equal opportunities.
Organizations must create a culture in the workplace that empowers women and addresses systemic bias and exclusion. Only by doing so can we reduce the experiences that culminate in the so-called impostor syndrome and help channel self-doubt into positive motivation.
Let’s join hands to foster a healthy work culture and enable more women leaders to break the proverbial glass ceiling!
Image source: CanvaPro
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If her MIL had accepted her with some affection, wouldn't they have built a mutually happier relationship by now?
The incident took place ten years ago.
Smita could visit her mother only in summers when her daughter had school holidays. Her daughter also enjoyed meeting her Nani, and both of them had done their reservations for a week. A month before their visit, her husband told her, “My mom is coming for 4-5 months!”
Smita shuddered. She knew the repercussions. She would have to hear sarcastic comments from her mother-in-law for visiting her mother. She may make these comments directly only a bit, but her servants would be flooded with the words, “How horrible she is! She leaves me and goes!”
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I have no intention of watching Animal. I have heard it’s acting like a small baby screaming and yelling for attention. However, I read some interesting reviews which gave away the original, brilliant and awe-inspiring plot (was that sarcastic enough?), and I don’t really need to go watch it to have an informed opinion.
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