Imposter Syndrome is the belief that you’re not as competent as those around you perceive you to be (Forbes, 2022). In other words, imposter syndrome is term to describe that feeling you get when you achieve a high mark, receive a job offer, or something good happens to you, but you’re convinced it’s all by a fluke rather than your hard work.
Research shows that up to 46% of adults aged 18 – 24 have experienced imposter syndrome at some point in their lives (Forbes, 2022). However, even with these overwhelming statistics, this lingering feeling of inadequacy is seldom discussed at school, or in our day-to-day lives. This is where Beedie Luminary Sandra Radic comes in.
Sandra is a fourth year Computer Science major at the University of British Columbia. As part of our 2019 Cohort, we have watched Sandra work incredibly hard from day one of her post-secondary journey. Late last year in 2022, Sandra made news across our website and social media for co-launching UBC’s very first female-forward and fashion-themed hackathon in collaboration with Aritzia. Despite Sandra’s scholarly accomplishments and impressive side-projects like hackathon UBC GirlCode, Sandra started experiencing feelings of inadequacy and self-doubt. Troubled by these feelings, Sandra took it upon herself to learn about imposter syndrome, what it is, and how to fight it.
Now, with a better understanding of these feelings and mechanisms to help her navigate them when they arise, Sandra is here to share some tips that have helped her through her academic journey so far.
“46% of adults aged 18-24 have experienced imposter syndrome.”
So what does Sandra have to say about fighting back at Imposter Syndrome?
Tip #1: Talk about how you feel.
Your friends, family, and/or general support system can be great at reminding you of who you are and all that you are capable of. As an outsider to your mind, they see all your accomplishments at face-value without the underlying emotions that have you questioning yourself in the first place.
Tip #2: Self reflection is key.
Remember, you are likely your greatest critic. Additionally, when you are overcome by imposter syndrome, it can be hard to think clearly. Taking some time to physically write down or make digital notes of your accomplishments (no matter how small or big) can be a great self-reflective exercise. By completing this exercise, you are creating a physical representation of your hard work.
Tip #3: Feel like an imposter? Ok, own it!
Imposter syndrome maybe isn’t all bad. Feeling this way indicates that you are on the right path by regularly challenging yourself. If you felt super comfortable every day, what growth would you be making?
Tip #4: Remember, you wouldn’t be where you are if you actually an imposter.
It’s quite literally just a feeling. In order for you to have gotten where you are now, you have made your way through several stages of an application, interviews, coffee chats, etc. You aren’t there by mistake, and people around you value you and your accomplishment.
Watch the full video below:
THANK YOU SANDRA. UNTIL NEXT TIME!
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