Have you ever wondered why no matter how hard you work and how much you achieve, it’s just not good enough? You earned the degrees, got a good job, started the business, purchased the fabulous home and drive the fancy car. On the outside, it appears as if you are the woman; however, on the inside, you feel like a fraud. You’ve adopted this “fake it till you make it” philosophy and feel undeserving of the superwoman title that has been bestowed upon you. You are absolutely afraid of being found out and think your world is going to come crashing down when everybody learns you aren’t who you say you are – that is, you’re not good enough. How do you change that? Apply these five action steps to move from fraudulent and fabulous and accept that you are good enough.
- Remind yourself of where you’ve been
When you’re going through your journey to becoming this fabulous, accomplished woman, the struggle is so real! But once you’ve achieved that goal and move on to your next challenge, you sometimes forget what it took for you to get to where you are today. You tend to focus on what hasn’t happened yet instead of embracing the here and now and the path you took to get there. Learn to validate your experiences and remind yourself of how you persevered, despite those obstacles. If you did it then, then you can do it again. You still possess that level of determination, motivation, and strength that got you to your first victory, and it will get you to and through the next. Give yourself credit for what you had to to go through. For example, remind yourself that:
I had to put myself through school while working full time, but I did it. I had to postpone going back for my Master’s degree because I had bills to pay, had a baby, and was still trying to figure out who I was or what I wanted. It wasn’t always easy but I made it through. I know if I got through it then, then I’m going to get through it now. Can’t nothing stop me!
- Acknowledge your accomplishments
It’s easy to feel fraudulent when focusing on what you haven’t achieved yet versus what you’ve accomplished so far. Instead of directing your energy on what has not happened, focus on your progress instead of perfection. Once you shift your attention, you’ll begin to realize how far you’ve actually come.
Don’t say this: I haven’t earned my Ph.D. yet; I’m not a manager or supervisor at work and am stuck; I only have one client in my business; I don’t own my house and I’m ___ years old. I should be further along in life than I am.
Say this instead: I’m so proud of myself for graduating from college and earning my degree. I working on my Master’s now and am doing well in my program. I have a great job and bring a lot to the table. My side hustle is taking off, and I’m doing something each day to help my business grow. I have a nice home and am working hard to save money and improve my credit so I can become a homeowner. I’m right where I’m supposed to be at this moment in my life, and am proud of what I’ve done so far. I’m doing what I need to do, and my best is yet to come!
- Affirm yourself daily with positive affirmations.
As adults, we’re responsible ultimately responsible for building ourselves up and must define our own values – not waiting for others to validate us. Yes, as children, our caregivers have that responsibility, and those experiences and messages that we received during our formative years often shape who we become as adults. We can either subscribe to those messages or we can create our own. Self-affirmations involve simply telling yourself how fabulous you are. Even if you don’t believe them yet, keep affirming yourself until you do. You can ever write them down on little sticky notes and place them on your mirror like Mary Jane from Being Mary Jane, your dashboard in your car, on notes in your cell phone, or maybe on your laptop. The goal is just to have easy access to these affirmations and state them daily. Just like the in the movie The Help, “you is smart, you is kind, you is important.”
- Quit comparing yourself to others
I’m convinced that comparing yourself to others is of the devil! There is no good that can come from measuring yourself against other folks, because either one of two things are going to happen: 1) You’re going to get an inflated head and ego, and look down upon others who are on a different level than you or 2) You’re going to feel like crap and your self-esteem is going straight down the toilet
You can only be the best version of you and trying to change who you are to be like someone else is fraudulent. It’ll never work, and you will eventually be exposed. Instead of defining your self-worth based on what other people have or don’t have and trying to keep up with people, who at the end of the day, have no impact on your life, focus on competing against yourself and outdoing your damn self. How do you quit comparing yourself to other people? Unplug from social media and never assume you know the whole story. People only share their best moments, and for those who appear to be doing well, you don’t know what it took them to get there. So chill, and just do you!