For 7/8 straight months, I felt like I was forcing something I didn't like, something I didn't know anything about.
Running my marketing agency was like re-living a nightmare every day of my life.
Each day would repeat itself the next - wake up, do outreach where I promise people a dream I had not yet delivered - get rejected - repeat.
No matter how much struggle or hardship I experienced, I had that shining beacon of hope in the back of my mind.
Tracing back to my door-to-door sales job, I remembered a key lesson they *tried* to teach me.
That was to 'fake it till I make it.'
Being an introvert made it extremely difficult to go around knocking on people's doors... with enthusiasm to top it all off.
Every time I complained that this wasn't for me, they'd tell me to simply 'fake it till I make it.'
Naturally, when I transitioned into the agency owner role, I tried to adopt the 'fake it till you make' mindset.
The mindset that we've been here before, we've done this multiple times, and it's just another day.
I tried everything possible - I hired people who actually HAVE been here before, people who have delivered the results that I'm promising clients.
I did some mindfulness practice, tried some visualization, however, every day felt like it was getting worse than the one before.
Although my initial reaction is happiness and hope, a few moments after I realise someone has booked in a call with me, I start to overthink all the things that can go wrong.
It's not my fault really, it's just my body trying to protect me from the unknown by sabotaging me.
The lead-up to my sale calls was full of trembling fear.
Although I wanted to close the call more than anything else in the world, I also had doubt about what happens after we close the deal running through my mind.
Have you ever just felt like you don't belong?
Like you're just faking something to get somewhere?
Like you're a complete fraud in your 'field of expertise?'
That's exactly what imposter syndrome feels like. It's the feeling that everything you've got is underserved or what you're doing is simply not you.
Today, we're covering the 4 ways of overcoming imposter syndrome for entrepreneurs.
You're not the only one
That's an absurd figure when you really think about it.
It's also said that the higher up you go, the more success you accumulate, the worse your imposter syndrome gets.
Like most other things that we face, imposter syndrome can't just magically disappear.
It's something that has to be tamed, something you learn to live with.
Just like how Eddie learned to live with Venom (in the movie Venom) after a long and neverending fight with himself, imposter syndrome is sort of the same.
The simplest way to learn to live with it is by being around others who also experience it.
People who know what it's like to feel inferior to your own mind.
There are a bunch of places you can find a small network, a support system of people like you.
The simplest way might be to head over to Facebook or Reddit and identify the groups available which are related to imposter syndrome.
If you're an entrepreneur, I implore you to join our Quora group - we're working on building the largest entrepreneurial community to ever exist.
Introduce yourself, tell people what you do, and how you feel.
Aim to build real connections with people.
You can learn more about connecting with people and networking in this article here.
Confront the voice
When that voice in your head starts to tell you that you're nothing, that you're not deserving of success, what do you do?
If you don't know the answer to this, it's probably because you don't do anything.
Most of us just let these thoughts run free which is what makes them keep coming back over and over again.
Like a school bully, these thoughts will not go away unless you show them that they're messing with the wrong person.
It's a lot easier than you think to do this.
One thing that's worked really well for me is either going on a walk to get some fresh air and room to think or simply just write about it.
If you've read some of my other articles including the one where I wrote a 30,000-word book within a week, you'll know that I'm a fan of writing.
When you physically sit down to write things that are on your mind, you're able to bring these thoughts and feelings to life.
Instead of inanimate objects floating around in your head, writing them down helps you make them tangible.
This gives you a lot more space and freedom to work with.
You're now able to diagnose the issue head-on, instead of leaving them whirling around in your mind.
You're going to want to figure out the trigger - the event that made you feel the way you're feeling.
For me, it goes back to the limiting beliefs I have about success.
Every time I edge closer to success, I start to feel undeserving of it. Failure has been ingrained in me and so anything that isn't failure seems like it doesn't belong.
For example, when I failed my dropshipping store for the first time ever, this idea of failing started to become part of my identity.
Months later, every time I was close to signing a client, I found a way to sabotage myself because I felt it's something I didn't deserve.
Finally, think about whether feeling like this is justified or not. Are you just letting your mind take control, or are you actually deserving of this imposter feeling?
You don't need to know it all
This comes with the acceptance that you're not going to understand or know everything there is to know.
When I decided that I wanted to start Hawk Prospecting, a contact finder for agencies and salespeople, I knew absolutely nothing about coding.
However, with a strong interest in flipping that over, I spent time and energy figuring out a solution because I wanted to make this work.
A few weeks later, Hawk Prospecting was born.
Throughout this period of time, I embraced the fact that I didn't know anything about coding, I was okay with that fact.
Once again, it's the limiting belief that you need to know it all that gives us this feeling of being an imposter.
No one knows anything when they're initially jumping into a new venture, it's a new game for everybody.
However, the people that succeed are the people that accept the fact that they don't need to know it all to play the game.
There's a story about an army veteran who found himself in a corporate job after his time serving in the military.
Whenever there was stress or pressure in the workplace, the only person who seemed completely in control of themself was the army veteran himself.
When he was asked 'how are you so composed?' he gave a simple answer.
"I've been in life-threatening situations where I've witnessed my brothers die beside me at war. When you compare the two situations, it's incomparable."
Sometimes we've just got to take a deep breath and know that it's not the end of the world if we don't know something.
Everyone doesn't know something.
If I signed a client and failed to deliver, it was not going to be the end of the world.
A simple refund would have solved the problem.
See the opportunity
You're not walking this path to make more money, although lots of people believe that.
You're walking this path to discover yourself, improve, and make a bigger impact on the world.
The greater your impact, the more you're rewarded.
Part of the journey, in fact, most of the journey will be spent failing at things you thought you knew.
The challenge is then to realise you've failed and get up to give it another shot.
It's a lot harder to face this and learn from your failures.
To bypass barriers, you need to relearn what you thought you knew all along.
You need to accept that there is a sea of knowledge out there that you haven't yet explored.
Instead of falling victim to your imposter syndrome and feeling inferior to it, use it as an opportunity.
An opportunity to learn new things, things you didn't know before.
Only after you confront it and know the reason it occurs, then you could understand where the gap in your knowledge was.
Currently, with Hawk Prospecting, I'm starting to get a sense of imposter syndrome.
I'm feeling like I've built software that I don't know how to maintain.
I've built software that I don't know how to improve due to a lack of technical ability.
Do I use this as an opportunity to scurry into my comfort zone, or do I use this as an opening to learn?
I'm sure we both know the answer to that!
Remember, imposter syndrome is only as powerful as we let it be.
Succumb to it, and you'll live a life of pain and suffering, a life where you're always on the trail but never catch up.
However, when you decide to face it and take these 4 tips into account, you'll be able to tame it and bend it to your will.
Those have been the 4 ways to overcome imposter syndrome for entrepreneurs.
Did you find a useful nugget in there?
If so, please comment your thoughts down below - I love hearing how my content helps you!
Also, please don't forget to share this with others in your network!
Till next time,