No, You're Not a Fraud.

Dear Shi, 

There’s a lot of talk about showing up as an expert but sometimes I feel like an Imposter.  I have the credibility, experience, certification, and the clients, but every time I reach a new level, the fear that I’ll be found out of “just faking it” gets me.  How can I own my expertise and stop wasting energy on feeling like a fraud? 


Dear Rachel, 

First, let’s talk about what Imposter Syndrome is. It affects the successful, the established, and the credible would have a hard time celebrating your accomplishments.   So if you’re feeling it, chances are, you are NOT an imposter. 

Second, let’s talk about being an expert in terms of being a leader, and infuse some leadership principles into the mix:

  • Remember: it’s not about you.  When you feel like an imposter, you’re putting your focus on YOU and feelings of “not enough” instead of thinking of ways to focus on others and how to better serve them.  Take some time to really pinpoint and discern WHY you feel like a fraud, and then commit to getting back to growing your competence, your confidence as you lead your biz and serve other.  
  • Leaders build trust, and that means growing your character and competence over time.  
    Your character, your values, your integrity, are they in check with your actions?  For example, you may be out of integrity if you’re speaking at a big conference about social media marketing, but you’ve never used Facebook or Instagram before.  You would be out of integrity, and your character would be in jeopardy.  

    There are seasons of growing your competence.  Write a list of your certifications, tribe love, ways you’ve helped people as a reminder that it’s a progress and you DO some knowledge and expertise in this area.  
  • Leaders are learners.  You don’t have to know EVERYTHING.  Commit to admitting that you DON’T KNOW something, and then refer to someone who does, or decide to learn more 

Feeling like a fraud isn’t an effective use of your energy, but it can help you check in to see if you’re best serving those who need you most.  

Your Action Step: 

  1. Write a list of your accomplishments, certifications, client testimonials, and WHY you are an expert!  
  2. Keep it in a visible place so you can refer and add to it.  

I’d love to know — What is YOUR expertise in?  How are you committed to continually learning and growing? 

If you found this letter helpful, please share it with your friends.  If you’d like more insight into turning your ideas into action so you can create a successful business and intentional life, then subscribe to the “Letters For Leaders” and receive your free “Vision Into Action” workbook.

With Joy,