Overcoming imposter syndrome is not something that happens overnight but with Faith Mariah’s unique take on it, we can get that much closer to overcoming it.
IE 243: Overcoming Imposter Syndrome as an Online Entrepreneur with Faith Mariah
Faith Mariah got her start in online business as the creator of Radical Transformation Project, a mental health blog that provided Faith’s full-time income for 3 years. The success of that blog led her to begin coaching bloggers in how to scale their own blogs into a full-time gig.
Faith specializes in bloggers who are stuck in self-doubt/self-sabotage. She brings clarity to the issues bloggers face through her background in social work and mental healthcare.
Why Are Some Women Successful and Others Are Not?
I can tell you from working with female entrepreneurs for years that the number one thing holding them back is mindset. Mindset issues can keep you stuck for years.
Faith says she saw an epidemic of mindset issues and self-sabotage when she got into the blogging world. There were women who were able to build their business to be successful and others who just couldn’t seem to get there.
At the core of success is the question, do you think your work is good?
You can employ every strategy on the planet but if you don’t believe in yourself, nobody will believe in you.
What Is Impostor Syndrome?
I’m sure most of you have heard the term “impostor syndrome,” but what does it mean and how do you know if you are struggling with it?
Faith sees impostor syndrome manifesting in a couple of ways but the primary way is a woman feeling like, yes, she may have skills or a message, but she isn’t sure she’s the one who should be doing that. Surely, someone else could do it better than she could.
It’s hard to market yourself or your product when you don’t believe in yourself, wholeheartedly and in a powerful way.
If you feel like you need to keep your business or online presence small because someone else can do it better, you might be dealing with impostor syndrome.
What If You’re the One?
It’s easy for someone struggling with impostor syndrome to downplay your gifts. It’s easy to think that somebody else can do what you do better than you can.
But Faith asks an important question-
“What if you’re the one?”
It’s a huge assumption to make that someone else is called to do the work you feel called to do, with the clients you’re called to help, and that they’ll be better at it than you are.
What if you are the one? The one who needs to help a person who is struggling.
What if someone remains in a place of self-doubt and defeat just because you decide to play small and let others do the heavy lifting?
By not sharing your gifts with those who need them, you’re not only keeping yourself small; you’re being selfish by not helping those who need what you have to offer.
What Triggers Impostor Syndrome?
Impostor syndrome can be attributed to many things but the #1 thing Faith sees is a lack of self-worth.
From a young age, women are taught humility, putting others first, and self-denial. We are taught not to ask for anything for ourselves but to always think of others first. We need to be quiet, serve always, and stay in the background.
Stepping into the entrepreneurial space requires you to step out of that comfort zone and own your awesomeness. You have to be willing to say, “I am good at what I do!”
It means telling people that they should work with you and feeling good about charging what you’re worth for them to do so.
Walking in Self-Confidence
Do you ever get that scared, uncomfortable feeling when you’re about to do something new or take the next step in your business? That is actually a signal that growth is on the other side and you need to step out in confidence and press forward.
People always tell me how confident I am, and I just have to laugh. Listen, I am not naturally any more self-confident than you are!
What I am is a woman who has trained myself to keep moving forward. I keep pressing on in my business, doing the things I know I am good at, and the self-confidence follows the action. It doesn’t come before the action.
I absolutely loved the example Faith shared about self-confidence-
If you had never picked up a violin, would you feel confident putting on a violin concert for an audience? Of course not! But if you had been practicing the violin for years, you would be more likely to feel confident about doing it.
In order to feel confident in business, you just need to keep practicing. And if you have been practicing for longer than somebody else, you might seem really confident to them. I might seem very confident to you, but remember, I have been practicing for a long time.
If you never stop moving forward, eventually those feelings of fear and failure will just get out of your way. You get used to doing the next thing and it starts to feel normal.
How to Overcome Impostor Syndrome
When Faith works with bloggers, she spends the majority of her time helping them with mindset issues. One of the ways she does that is by using “bridge thoughts.”
Our thoughts don’t tend toward, “I’m great! I can help so many people with my gifts! The world will be better because of the information I share!”
No. What think is more like, “This is stupid. Everybody will laugh at this because they know me and they know I’m lame. This is silly and nobody will want it.”
It’s nearly impossible to go from that 100% negative self-talk to 100% positive self-talk. Using bridge thoughts helps you move in the direction of the positive in a way that your brain will support and begin to believe.
For example, instead of trying to convince yourself you’re the best blogger ever, think something like, “Even if people laugh at me online, I still have things I want to post.” Or, “Even if I don’t think I’m very good, I’m going to practice anyway so I can get better.”
Is Your Security a Reality?
When I left my teaching position to go full-time on my blog, my parents and family were horrified. They saw me as leaving a job with total security for my future for something with no guarantee.
Faith went through the same thing. As a first-generation college graduate with a job at a university, her family was proud of her and assumed she would keep that job until she retired from it. After all, it offered total security.
But for Faith, and for me, we are more secure now than we were in full-time careers elsewhere. Our security depends on our ability to use our gifts to serve others. We know how to market ourselves and our products.
We can generate income for ourselves no matter what. Nobody can fire us. Our security is in our own hands, not the hands of a business owner.
If you need a pep talk for your money mindset; if you feel stuck in low self-worth and need a kick in the pants; if you’re doing all the things but your income isn’t growing like you want it to, please accept Faith’s free gift for my audience on money mindset.
And you can always shoot me a DM over on Instagram and I will send you the link.
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