Anytime I take the next step up in my business, I go through about impostor syndrome.

My good old friend, the Voice of Doubt, pipes up, warning me that I should have everything figured out before I expose myself in this new way.

This week, two clients asked me how to overcome impostor syndrome. One has a new job she loves but fears she won’t be able to do justice. The other is about to reveal her signature system, a process she’s developed for years and which has transformed her life, but that she fears she cannot market authentically.

Both clients told me they think the solution to overcoming impostor syndrome is to focus more on the positive.

Most people view positive thinking as pressing through fear or not focusing on the negative. While this might work for some people, ignoring your fear is not usually the best way to overcome impostor syndrome.

Following your calling is less about fearlessness and much more about courage, the ability to move through fear.  I don’t believe I’ve ever met a single person who didn’t feel fear as they took the next step forward in their business or life.

Overcoming Impostor Syndrome is about feeling the fear and doing it anyway.

If you find yourself continually struggling with imposter syndrome, here’s the process I suggest for working through it and discovering genuine positivity:

The Voice of Doubt is a good sign.

Any time that you have a calling, a deeply inspired yearning to create change, you will also have a Voice of Doubt who warns that somehow you’re not yet ready or that people will find out you’re a fraud if you put yourself too far out there. Anytime you’re working towards your dreams, and you find yourself trying to overcome impostor syndrome, know that your fear is a sign that you are moving in the right direction.

The Voice of Doubt is your ally.

Although we’re trained to view fear as something to avoid, your Voice of Doubt is actually your ally.  Below the surface, your calling is about letting go of old habits and stories that keep you stuck in an old way of being.  Fear is usually a sign that you have an old pattern you need to let go of to reach your dreams or that you have more preparation to do before you take the next step towards your calling.  When you ignore your fear, you miss out on this valuable information.

Listen to the Voice of Doubt.

Rather than ignoring the Voice of Doubt, listen to it with self-compassion.  Sit down with a pen and paper, and ask your voice of doubt to tell you its positive intention.  Yes, its positive intention.  Write down the answer you hear, and each time the voice stops, ask if there is anything else it would like to share.  Even if the voice initially sounds harsh or critical, don’t turn away.  Instead, listen with all the love, attention, and kindness you would give to a frightened child.

Address the Voice of Doubt without losing sight of your goals.

Get curious about how to address your Voice of Doubt’s fear while continuing to move boldly towards your dreams.  Do you need to let go of an old story about who you are or what it means to be successful?  Do you need to talk to people who know you and love you and can give you encouragement?  Do you have more preparation to do?  Approach this as a both-and situation.  What can you do to honor your Voice of Doubt’s positive intention while still moving forward?

Courage is necessary for succeeding in business. Courage is also a skill, one that we learn much faster when we have a guide who knows how to navigate through and around the terrain of fear. If you’re ready to overcome impostor syndrome, stop feeling stuck, and start moving towards your goals with ease, I would love to support you. Click here to learn more about confidence coaching and start developing a mindset for success!

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