EVERYONE will feel like a cheat at some point in their life.
But some people get worry and worry about being “discovered” all the time.
It could be a job you don’t feel qualified for, an accomplishment that you haven’t worked hard enough for, or just can’t accept a compliment.
Imposter syndrome is a psychological pattern that causes sufferers to doubt themselves and their performance – it was first noted by experts Pauline Clance and Suzanne Imes in a 1978 psychology paper.
It can cause people to constantly fear being “exposed as scammers” because they feel they don’t deserve their own accomplishments.
Those who suffer from it tend to show symptoms of depression, generalized anxiety, and low self-esteem.
Some people seem more prone to feeling like a cheater, singling out five personality types that can develop the syndrome.
These are usually people who make an effort to prove they are not scammers.
They use success to avoid feeling like a cheat and get stressed out when they can’t experience it.
People with this personality trait tend to do everything on their own.
You might think that asking for help and accepting defeat is a sign of weakness.
These people often think that if they do this, it might be obvious that they are a scam.
These people are used to taking things easy.
When something comes up that is too difficult, they will assume they are not good enough if they cannot complete it.
They want to know everything and when they are not afraid to speak their mind or take risks.
These people usually don’t stand up for tasks they don’t like so they don’t look stupid.
For this group, it’s 100 percent or nothing at all.
There could be a proposed change to a 200 page document and they would see this as a failed project and feel unfinished.
Professor Sir Cary Cooper is an organizational and industrial psychologist.
He points out that imposter syndrome can particularly impair performance.
He said, “Fraud Syndrome can stunt productivity and seriously affect a person’s career development.”
but added, “By regularly remembering your achievements and recent victories, you can put your self-doubts into context.”