After we have accomplished our goals, we may not feel the happiness we had hoped for. We worked hard and did our best in our career, but it still feels like we aren’t good enough; like we are an imposter in our own life. We might feel like we do not deserve the life that we have. A relatively new phenomena floating around in mental health is “imposter syndrome”. Imposter syndrome is not actually a syndrome or an officially diagnosable disorder; it is a thought pattern in which a person constantly doubts their own accomplishments or fears that they will be exposed as a fraud. I think that many of us feel this way, maybe not to the degree that we worry someone with show up in our workplace and ask us to leave due to actual incompetence. But on a lesser scale in which we may not feel comfortable with our own success. Becoming accomplished in one’s field is not an overnight shift. It takes years to learn what works in our career and after a while we are an expert whether we realize it or not. If you have trained, studied and worked hard, you deserve to be right where you are. Here are some strategies that will give you permission to accept your success.
1. Talk about it. When we share our thoughts and feelings with others, we are often
surprised that our peers feel the same. When things are normalized, we feel better about
2. When are are feeling particularly insecure think about the facts. List out the steps you
took to get where you are. Think about performance evaluations, trainings, jobs that you’ve
3. We do not have to know everything about everything. You have a certain skills set.
Recognize your unique talents and accentuate the positive.
4. Create a new narrative. You are in charge of your own story. Instead of thinking “How
did I get here?”. Change your thinking to “I’ve worked hard to have this life. I’m right where
I need to be.”
5. Set new goals. Sign up for trainings, classes, work trips, etc. You can always learn
more and further your career.
The holiday season is a stressful time of year. It’s stressful financially as you run around playing Santa for everyone you know. It’s stressful on your time as you go from holiday concert to holiday pageant to family pictures. It’s stressful emotionally as the days are shorter and colder and although you’d rather hibernate, you have so much to accomplish before Christmas. You have been scouring Pinterest for holiday decorating ideas and outfits for your children so things will look just right. You are only adding stress if you are attempting to do it all while also wanting everything to be perfect. What about letting go of perfection this holiday season? So what if you miss taking the kids to see Santa at the mall! So what if you don’t send out Christmas cards! So what if you don’t have time to bake 10 dozen cookies for the neighbors, teachers or your coworkers! There is no such thing as perfect. Perfection is a myth. It’s all in your head. No one is really paying attention to you. They are too busy managing their own stress and just trying to survive. I despise the phrase “practice makes perfect”. Practice does not make perfect, it makes better. We can strive to be better. We can work to be a better spouse, parents, worker bee, etc. But striving to look a certain way or perform a certain way only adds to your stress and encourages you to head to a destination that is not on the map.
Perfectionism can be toxic. It only adds to your stress. It encourages you to compare yourself to others. Perfectionism discourages you to be your authentic self. Trying to live a perfect life is not sustainable and usually leads to an increase of anxiety and feelings of unhappiness. Perfectionism holds us back from living our best life.
One of the wonderful things about being human is that we are flawed. We are allowed to make mistakes. Mistakes teach us valuable lessons and lead to self-improvement. Think about a time when you made what seemed like a huge mistake at the time. I’m confident you learned something from that situation; a lesson that sticks with you to this day. Sometimes we are worried about appearing flawed because people will judge us harshly for it. To this I respond with a question “Who are you surrounded by that does not accept all of you?”. Does your support system include family and friends that accept you. I have enough to worry about rather than focus on judging whether or not my friend buys organic produce for her children. I’m not impacted in anyway if my neighbor’s house is dusty. If the people around you behave in a way that has you feeling less than, then it’s time to make some new connections. I encourage you to surround yourself with people who are comfortable in their own skin and as a result accept you, warts and all.
Focus on what makes you happy . If making the bed doesn’t give you joy; don’t make it! Let go of the things that you are doing because you think you “should”. Let go of the idea that there is one way of doing something. Let go of the idea that things have to look just right. If you are waiting for things to be just so before you dive in, you’ll probably be waiting forever. Dive in and join life.
Earlier this week I struggled with calming my mind and falling asleep. So I headed to the couch to watch a Hallmark Christmas movie, which, in the moment, felt like a luxurious way to spend my time. Needless to say, I was tired the next day. I had little if any patience with my children while getting everyone ready for school. By the afternoon, I was done. Unfortunately, I do not have a substitute mother that can be called in when I’m tired or don’t feel like adulting, so I had to make due while my energy tanks were empty. All of this could have been avoided if I just would have tried a little harder to calm my mind and get to bed at a more reasonable time than 1:30am. I know, I should know better. And you should, too. Here are some reminders on why sleep is so important and a few tips to improve your sleep.
Why sleep is important:
My practice specializes in helping people find time for self-care, discover balance and implement positive self talk. Many of my clients feel that they do not have enough time to get everything done. They also struggle to prioritize their health and most do not have a primary care provider and have not been to the doctor in years. In mental health after ensuring that our clients are safe, we rule out any medical issues that can be impacting mental health. It is difficult to find a primary care provider that accepts our insurance, has a good bedside manner and has openings in less that 4 months. But our health is incredibly important to all aspects of our lives and should be taken seriously. Here are a few tips for finding a provider that is a right fit for you.
I am a mental health therapist practicing in Henderson, NV. I have found that most of the people that I work with have lost themselves on the road to success. A key component of my treatment approach is assisting people in rediscovering their passions and restoring balance to their lives. This blog contains slivers of wisdom that I continue to discover while assisting people become mentally fit.