Send The Imposter Syndrome Packing

Imposter Syndrome (IS) is a hot topic. As a speaker coach, I often learn from clients and students that they are dogged by not feeling up to the task of giving a presentation or speech. That they will be found out for their lack of knowledge and/or experience.

Research shows that women are usually afflicted with IS much more than men. I don’t agree. In my practice, I have as many men coming to me doubting their ability and worth as women do, however, I will concede my research sampling is small compared to Pauline Rose Clance.

Ms. Clance is a pioneer in the study of IS. She says that many high achieving people feel that their success is due to fluke or luck and that in order to replicate it they have to work ten times harder to recreate their success.

I often share with many of my clients and students something that has helped me come to terms with being good enough. It’s something that a former communication professor told our class that I actually couldn’t wrap my head around at first. She said, “You are perfect as you are”. “Right here, right now, at this place in time, you are perfect”. I tossed it off to being woo woo stuff. It took me a few years to realize the weight of what she had told us.

We all are on a path of learning and evolving. And when we are given opportunities to share what we know with others it is the right time. Sure, we need to prep and do our research. But there will be people who will need and want to hear what you have to share and of course, there will be others who aren’t ready or have long passed your level of knowledge.

I challenge you the next time you think you are somehow an imposter to sit back and consider all that you do actually know and what it is you are measuring against.

I’ve written more about IS as a contributing author for the Huffington Post Canada that walks you through feeling uncomfortable with the thought of giving a presentation. Perhaps it will change your mind about whether you deserve to stand behind a podium and/or hold a mic. Let me know

To your voice!



I help build confident voices so they’re heard.

Janice Tomich is the founder of Calculated Presentations, a company dedicated to bringing out speaker’s stories to influence change. Janice coaches professionals, entrepreneurs, TED and TEDx speakers. She is a champion for equal representation by a diverse pool of presenters for all speaking events. Follow Janice on Twitter @janicetomich, on Facebook, on LinkedIn and subscribe for bimonthly newsletter updates.

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