How to prevent or overcome Imposter Syndrome

A woman hiding her face behind a wall
Photo by Daria Shevtsova

Dear writer, I have two questions for you:

Why do you think Imposter Syndrome is such a plague in your writing journey? Without Imposter Syndrome, would you be a better writer than you are right now, or would you stop writing altogether because things would become too easy for you?

The second question is rhetorical. However, the first one isn’t. From September to most of October 2021, my Imposter Syndrome happened to be at its highest. What I experienced was excessive canceling of plans and postponing interviews for later simply because I was anxious. I even convinced myself that I didn’t have any good ideas, knowing well I’m naturally resourceful whenever I need to do something. You cannot imagine the level of frustration I felt.

Because I was in a slump, I had to skip putting together an episode of my podcast and publishing it in October. I also took a break from posting updates on Instagram for the same reason. And when I gave it some thought in search of a solution, I realized a few things; something inside me thought, “Well you’re not ready for this. You’ll just waste time.”

I actually had my mind tell me I wasn’t good enough to do this, and before I knew it, negative patterns of thinking started to impede my progress. This is nasty business, especially if you have deadlines to meet. Most of my mental blocks came from feeling inadequate for some reason, even though they were things I'd done before. I mean, what’s an interview compared to a real danger, right?

What can you do to prevent or overcome Imposter Syndrome?

The first thing that I recommend is to read books that provide great insight into the lives of other writers. A lot of them deal with mental health issues, and it’s better to see how they dealt with the problems they faced. That way, if you find yourself having a similar experience, you won’t be left wondering if there’s something terribly wrong with you. Plus, you’ll realize that the writers you admire have doubts like the rest of us.

The second thing I did was find a way to divert my negative thoughts. Here is where writing on a blog came in handy for me because I could post my “struggles” as a means of venting. By doing this, I was able to release some of the pressure from my mind and start writing again.

If you are experiencing Imposter Syndrome, this is not the end of the world. Use this post as the sign that you are needed and that someone out there will be better off after reading what you have to share.

Peace and Love!

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Priscille B. Fatuma

Priscille is a freelance writer, fiction writer, podcaster, content creator & marketer. She loves books, movies, long naps, TV series, and dogs.