What causes imposter syndrome…and how to overcome it
You have been working hard and putting in a lot of effort, and finally someone going to pay you to do what you love…yet you feel like you don’t deserve it. You have this nagging worry in the back of your mind, what if I’m not good enough?
There isn’t a single person who hasn’t experienced this feeling. It’s called “imposter syndrome” and even celebs like Oprah and Beyonce have come out and said they have experienced this feeling too. I know it’s not enough to make it go away, but in this blog post I will share with you 3 things you can do to give yourself some grace and actually move forward.
An example of imposter syndrome
The first time I experienced imposter syndrome was when I landed my first freelance client. What if this middle aged man knows more than I do about social media marketing? I started to relax when I realized he didn’t even know what a landing page was.
Fast forward a few years and I realized time after time, that I actually knew a lot more than these clients did about tech and online business. People keep telling me, over and over again…you need to teach people how to do what you do. Fortunately I had a great mentor to push me forward.
I learned that calling yourself a social media manager, or a freelance marketing strategist, or a virtual assistant is completely external. It doesn’t really matter what you call yourself, if you’ve done the task successfully, then you can do it for someone else.
Don’t let your inner mean girl voice show up and start telling you that you can’t do something as good as someone else. Some people call this negative self-talk or a negative mindset.
In business, your mindset is everything, so kick that mean girl voice to the curb and get unstuck by following these 3 steps.
3 Steps to Overcoming Imposter Syndrome
Call Yourself Out
Use your journal to literally call out the belief that is holding you back. This is called a limiting belief. “I’m afraid of what my sister will think of me if I fail.” or “I can’t be a freelancer for that topic, I didn’t go to college for that.”
You have the experience; if you’ve done the thing…even if you haven’t done it for a client….if you’ve done it for yourself, then you can do it again.
On the flip side, if you have never done the thing yourself, then you probably should not offer it as a service to a client. Here’s an example: You can’t just go through a course on building an online business and then expect to teach other women how to build an online business if you haven’t successfully done it yourself.
However, if you’ve done the thing, like created a Facebook page, then you can offer it as a freelancer. Here’s another example…Do you love Pinterest? Can you offer pin creation as a social media management service? If you love to browse Pinterest who says you can’t pin for clients during your work day? Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life. Want to up level your knowledge about Pinterest, specifically? Check out my Pinterest specific training course here.
Think on it. Toss your limiting belief around in your mind so that you can put it to rest and stop worrying about it. Maybe you’re worried that you will disappoint those around you. Maybe you are worried you won’t like this new thing. Maybe you’re worried you won’t make enough money to sustain living the life you are accustomed to working a traditional “outside of the home” type of job. Whatever is holding you back, think about it from all different directions. Write about it. Writing helps us organize our thoughts better than just tossing it around in our mind.
What is your inner mean girl saying to you? Mean girl voices can show up in all kinds of ways. “I should have started sooner.” or “I don’t know how to do that.” or “I’m not as young, pretty or smart as she is.” Don’t listen to these voices. You called them out, you contemplated on them, now it’s time for the logic.
It’s important to take the emotion out and look at just the facts. I don’t know how to create a website so I can’t be a freelancer. Creating a website is just one skill. There are literally 50 other skills and tasks that I could list for you right now and I am willing to bet you have 25 of those skills that you could offer starting today as a freelancer.
Don’t believe me? Grab my FREE List of 50 Skills that Business Owners Need Help With, and that YOU can offer as a freelancer.
Remind yourself, making mistakes and failing are part of your journey. The more you fail, the better you’ll be about to learn, grow and become the best possible version of yourself.
Now that you are in a clear and unemotional frame of mind, you need to reframe that limiting belief and either write in your journal or pin up on your wall. Clarify it, and reframe it. Instead of “what will my sister think if I fail” write it as “My sister is proud of me and will support my new business.”
These 3 steps are actually really powerful. Commit and you’ll stop being a victim of your own circumstances and be able to move forward.
You are the only person who can do the thing. If the thing is start an online business and make $50,000 in the next 6 months, you don’t have to do that in an instant, but doing something today to move you forward and make progress. Progress will help get you there.
So lets get you a roadmap and a plan to get moving. If you’re interested in creating a successful freelance business for yourself so you can work from home and better balance work with the time you need to be a better mother and a better wife, then lets get you started.
Start by downloading my free list of 50 skills you can freelance with, and I’ll email you some bite-sized actions you can take to get to the next best chapter of your life!
I get it. You spent most of your life learning that it’s okay to go against the grain.
Do young adults not fully comprehend the severity, or do they just not care about Coronavirus COVID-19?
It’s okay to challenge conventional wisdom and question policies that are in place because “it’s always been that way.”
After all, that's what you learn in college.
Do your research.
Read credible sources.
You're posing the question: How will my older professors conduct online learning when they can't even swipe up?
They will learn. Just like you learned. Believe it or not these people have an incredible amount of wisdom and talent.
Perhaps you never looked at life from a higher level perspective.
You don’t see the problem with small things like driving diagonally across painted parking spaces in the Target parking lot, because you already looked both ways.
But what happens when you lean over to pick up your phone that fell on the passenger side floor, so you don’t see the toddler…his mom took him out of the carseat and as soon as his tiny feet hit the ground he went running?
Consider this hypothetical situation:
What happens when you find out that your best friend’s mom died?
Perhaps she was in the hospital recovering from a broken leg that happened while she was skiing the week before.
But since there wasn't enough protective gear for doctors and nurses, she became infected with Coronavirus.
She was fine last week…your friend’s mom.
You even talked about your families when you were at the beach. You talked about how you would abide by the rules and stay far away from your grandparents.
If you’re lucky enough to have grandparents who are still living.
When classes were cancelled and you had extra time to take a break after a long semester of work, you toasted a few drinks.
You’re still feeling great. Healthy. Rested. Invincible.
Your friends are feeling great too. Nobody has any symptoms of illness.
Yet even though you never experienced any symptoms, you were carrying the virus that killed her.
Your friend’s mom.
It can’t possibly be true.
You didn't even go near her, but your friend did. She was also asymptomatic.
You feel sorry for their family and let your friend know that you’ll be there if she needs you.
But the thought doesn’t even cross your mind.
About your own family.
You haven’t been around them.
You live in your own apartment…in a different city.
But then the inevitable happens.
You just got news that your own mom is feeling some mild flu-like symptoms.
She’s going to self-isolate and stay home. You’re definitely not going to your parents house, you want to stay as far away as possible so you don’t get sick.
And then it gets worse.
Your mom Facetime’s her doctor because they aren’t seeing “healthy” people in their office.
A day later, you text her.
She feels okay, but her breathing is getting heavy.
A few hours later, dad sends you a text that he’s taking her to the emergency room.
Within just a few hours, your phone rings.
Who could this be, nobody ever actually calls.
It’s your dad.
But it’s too late.
Too late to get to the hospital in enough time to say goodbye.
Now is not the time for you to be a “rule breaker”.
The reality is…nobody ever pays attention to something until that something slaps them in the face.
It doesn’t matter how old you are.
The situation above was hypothetical, to make you stop and think. But these situations are unfolding across our nation and around the world.
Death is the only uncertainty in the world. It spans generations, crosses borders, and discriminates against no one.
When the death of a loved one touches your life, that death will slap you in the face, and knock you off your feet, and then throw you against the wall.
Allow me to check my privilege at the door. I am an educated, white woman who is also a mother of two. I am privileged to be married to a man who sets my soul on fire.
Together, we have been through the ebbs and flows of life together for the last 2 decades.
We too once thought we were invincible. Like so many young people, the age of 40, 40, 50, 70…it seemed so far away. We thought we had so much time.
My mom died when our son was just 2 weeks old.
It was a confluence of miracle and loss.
Death will change you.
You need to do your part, now, before it's too late.
Instead of thinking about how bored you might be at home for a couple of weeks, why not put your effort into doing something that will actually help people?
What about all of the healthcare workers on the front lines of battling this horrific disease? Did you ever take the time to consider what they are doing for you? You might need to call on them sooner than you ever thought.
Always work for the greater good.
Be gracious for all that you have.
Because one day, not too far from now, you might just find yourself in a different situation.
Most dignified adults speak in a way that urges you to recognize the importance of this situation.
But my feeling is that you didn’t get it.
You missed the point.
There is a lot of greed in this world, and we're witnessing it on a daily basis. And my feeling is that the reason for this is because too many young people have been left to their own devices.
Consistently my own children are chastised because their friends feel that we are too strict. But we're not going around saying our kids have been “bullied.” We're taking the opportunity to have conversations with our children about what is right an wrong.
What is the right thing to do in this situation? I’m not afraid to say what needs to be said in a way that I hope you understand:
Stay the f*%&* home.
Social distancing does not mean going out in the neighborhood to play flashlight tag in the dark with a group of friends. It means DON'T GO OUT.
It doesn't mean go to the beach and sit 6-feet away from your neighbor. It means DON'T GO OUT.
If you interpreted it any other way, you are wrong.
We all need to do our part.
This is not about placing blame, or rehashing what “should have been done” to prepare. It's about leadership at a time when people need guidance.
Turn your passions into something uplifting like John Legand and share it with the world.
I don't normally write about topics like this but I just couldn't sit back and watch young people continue to make stupid decisions. I hope that if nothing else, you'll simply take a moment to open your eyes, your heart, and your mind, and understand the gravity of what is going on around you. It's up to you to save the world.
Want to start a blog of your own…but not sure exactly where to begin?
More and more people prefer to work from home these days. A global survey conducted in 2018 revealed that 70% of professionals globally work remotely at least once a week and 53% work remotely for at least half a week.
One of the reasons why many employees choose to work outside the traditional office setting and manage their tasks from home is because working from home has been proven to significantly reduce stress. However, while this may be true for many people, some also experience stress even if they are working from the comforts of their own home.
If you are one of these people, and you are looking for ways to reduce your stress levels while working from home, here are 5 tips:
1. Schedule your work when you are most productive
If you’re working in an office, you are most likely required to report at set schedules like 9 AM to 5 PM. Whether you’re a morning person or not, you would have to get up and brave the morning commute every single day. This daily grind is one of the reasons why many people choose flexible working times and the option to work from home.
What’s surprising is that many people still follow a fixed 8-hour schedule even if they’re working from home. For many, this is the sure-fire way that they can get things done and separate their personal stuff from their work tasks.
Following this can also help avoid working non-stop, which is why many people recommend following a set time. However, sticking to a strict work schedule can also be very stressful and in reality, it defeats the advantage of working from home, which is being able to choose a time when you want to work.
Working from home gives you the flexibility to schedule your work around your personal life so you can achieve a satisfying work-life balance. However, if you’re constraining yourself to a fixed schedule, not being able to keep to this schedule can add to your stress, especially if unexpected things come up.
This does not mean however that you should not keep a schedule at all. Instead of following a regimented nine to five daily routine, find out your peak productivity time that works for you and schedule your tasks during these periods.
If you’re the type of person who can’t get things done in the morning, go ahead and snooze away. It will be better for you to schedule your work in the afternoons rather than forcing yourself to work early without achieving anything. If you find, however, that a nine to five schedule is best for you, then that’s also not an issue.
The takeaway here is that you have the power to decide when to do your work so use that to your advantage rather than being limited by it.
2. Take frequent breaks
One of the best things about working from home is that if you’re feeling stuck whether mentally or physically, you can always take a break without anyone commenting about it. Many people who work from home do not take advantage of this luxury.
Remember that you’re no longer trapped at your office desk, so you don’t need to stay there for eight hours straight!
There have been numerous studies suggesting that a sedentary lifestyle, including sitting on an office desk for long periods, can shorten your life. This can also cause a lot of physical pains like backaches and neck pains, which can add to your stress.
Before you even begin feeling eye strain or stiff neck, make sure that you’re giving yourself time to move and breathe.
Get up and stretch out. Go to the kitchen and have a cup of coffee. Contrary to common belief, studies have shown that coffee breaks don’t kill productivity, instead, these breaks can help you become more alert and avoid mistakes.
When you take these micro breaks, you are also allowing your brain to recharge so you can be more creative and efficient in doing your work.
Thinking about starting a Blog? Download this Free Checklist to help you get started!
3. Create a dedicated workspace
Whether you live in a small studio space or a five-bedroom home, it is recommended to have a dedicated working space that you can call your own. It can be an entire home office or just a small desk by the window. What’s important is that you do your work in that space and if people live with you, they are aware that that space is for you.
Why is this important? When you don’t have a fixed space to work in, you’re most likely to use just any available space in the house. This will expose you to a lot of distractions.
One of the pitfalls of working from home is having distractions. Distractions can come in the form of family members, roommates, television, or even your own bed. When you are distracted from your work, the tendency is that you won’t be able to complete your tasks on schedule which can be very stressful.
This can be avoided if you have your own workspace away from these distractions. If you don’t live alone, try to avoid working in common rooms like the living room or kitchen where people may come and go constantly.
4. Get rid of clutter
If you’re reading this while you’re in front of your work desk, take a hard look at your working table and your office. How many items do you really need in that space? Are all the items around helping you become more productive? If there are items that are not necessary, these may be adding to your stress. According to a study, clutter can restrict your ability to focus, process information, and can make you distracted.
Make sure to have your work area always clean and organized. Remove unnecessary items in your work area to help you focus better. If you have an uneaten bar of candy beside your laptop, a coffee mug from two days ago, or paper files that you haven’t touched in months, then it’s time for you to do a KonMari makeover of your workspace and get rid of anything that doesn’t spark joy, or in this case, spark productivity.
5. Know when to log off
There are people who believe that working from home can cause more stress. This is because you can be at risk of longer working hours, unpaid overtime, lack of sleep, or the inability to separate work from your personal life. When you’re working from home, nobody is there to command you to keep working, but at the same time, nobody will also switch off the lights and tell you to go home. The temptation to just keep on working exists which can result in overworking and stress. How can this be avoided?
The best way to avoid working non-stop is to become results-oriented in planning your day. Prioritize what you want to achieve during your workday using realistic timelines. Don’t cram in too many tasks when you know that it’s impossible to finish those tasks in eight hours.
If a job is too big to finish in a day, break it down into smaller tasks and stop when the tasks are completed. For example, if you’re supposed to write a 30-page report which you know you can’t complete in one day, divide the work into 10 pages a day over three days. After completing 10 pages, stop working and continue the next day.
Looking to Connect with other bloggers, social media influencers, and online entrepreneurs? Join our Free Private Facebook Group
Another useful tip is to take time to plan your schedule. If you know what work is coming your way, calendar your tasks early on to avoid stressing out and cramming when the deadlines are near. Use a digital calendar that can prompt you of your deadlines so you’ll not miss out on important dates.
Busting work from home stress
Working from home can provide a lot of benefits to employees, however, if you practice poor work habits, you could suffer from numerous distractions which can stress you out. Following the recommendations above could help you in managing your work and hopefully, reduce your stress levels when working from home.
This blog was contributed by Nathan Sharpe. Nathan is a business advisor and business writer at Biznas. He has helped many clients solve their business problems, and now imparts his advisory knowledge onto others to help them improve their businesses too.
Here's how you can Leverage the Power of Pinterest…
When the thought of using Pinterest for business first crossed my mind, I didn’t really believe it would be possible.
But as I scrolled through my feed, I started reading blogs where people were talking about how they made over $10,000 per month (and more) blogging. I remember thinking “that can’t possibly be true!”
Women eventually get to a point in their life where they want (and sometimes desperately need) a more flexible work life.
Whether it’s the need for flexible hours to be more present with your growing family, or the desire to travel and not be tied down by a 9 to 5, we all dream of a balance between career and life.
This blog post is about my personal journey to grow my business using Pinterest
I don't typically like sharing about my own personal journey, but I was encouraged to share the full story because some people I trust believe that YOU can be inspired to create your own empire by reading it! I hope it inspires you!
So lets start at the beginning. I started my first blog while I was pregnant…in 2006. I was absolutely over the corporate stress, and I knew that I was going to need some flexibility.
At first I didn't think the blog would actually be a business, it was just for fun.
I was still looking for a remote job.
The more I searched, the more frustrated and impatient I got. There are a lot of scams out there.
For the love of all things, don't EVER sign up to do surveys!
I don't know why people are still even talking about that junk!
Anyway, I browsed through websites like FlexJobs, Virtual Vocations, Indeed, and even LinkedIn, I just didn’t believe it was going to be possible for me to get a good job and still have the flexibility to work from home.
So I had this blog, but I didn't yet recognize that it could be monetized, and I surely didn't yet recognize that I could gain massive amounts of website visitors and make money by using Pinterest.
Months went by and I didn’t make a dime.
In the meantime, I was doing freelance work and running Facebook ads for others…and literally teaching others how to grow their online business.
But I didn't have the kind of money they did.
Money to spend on paid ads that is.
But I was determined. I knew that Pinterest was different from Facebook.
I finally stopped doing the work for others and started making things work for my own business
Once I decided to focus on my own business, I ended up pulling in a few thousand dollars a month.
It was certainly enough to supplement my husband’s income, so thankfully I didn’t need a full-time 9 to 5, but it still wasn’t generating the tens of thousands that I was hearing about.
I bought a few courses to make sure I wasn't missing anything, but they didn't offer me anything other than completely vague advice.
I knew better.
On two occasions I even emailed a “course creator” after I purchased her course to ask some questions, and would you believe that 2 different people didn't even bother to get back to me?!
I mean seriously.
Now I was even more determined.
After a few more months I decided to really buckle down and get focused. I documented my strategy, interviewed successful business owners, even took a high-ticket, entrepreneural mastermind, and read more books than I ever thought existed about the topic…I finally zero’d in on what actually worked.
In a matter of days, I jumped from making around $200 per day to making over $2,000 per day! The first day, I stared at my real-time analytics and thought it couldn’t be real. Then the next day, and the next. After about 6 months, I knew I had stumbled upon the real methodology. Needless to say, it has completely changed our life.
I just knew I needed to share this experience so that other women could feel this kind of impact too.
It started with my neighbor, then some friends, and finally, women around the world, who all need the flexibility to work on their own terms…just like I did.
I’m giving away the same game-changing insights that I paid well over $7,000 for!
Because I define success as the dreams that you can help other’s achieve, not what’s in my wallet.
I've had students tell me that what I teach in this course is worth far more than I'm charging for it. That's a huge compliment which I definitely appreciate very much, but I just can't raise the price.
I want it to be affordable, yet uncomfortable. What does that mean?
Well if you pay $50 for a course, then you're not really invested in it. You might not take it seriously. But if you spend a few hundred….well then I know you're invested in yourself and in learning as much as you can. I know this from my own experience!
Over many years of the 9 to 5 lifestyle, I experienced way too much “corporate greed” and I wear my heart on my sleeve.
And, I was disgusted at the women who didn't answer my email. I mean…who are these people?
I'll never be that person who doesn't care about the people I inspire.
The bottom line is that I do care.
I care about helping you achieve your goals.
Yes, I need to make a living too, but I don’t believe in ripping you off so that I can live in luxury while you struggle.
That’s why the mini-course is only $40.
I’ve got your back.
Here are a few details, so you can get a glimpse of how the process works:
Part 1. The Story
Telling a story is much more likely to encourage someone to take action because you make a meaningful connection. You can do this through a blog post by writing, or you can do it through video. This is also the foundation of how you can make money using YouTube. If you don’t have a blog yet, don’t worry, the Pinterest Mini-Course starts out by walking you through how to set up your blog or website, step-by-step.
If you want to make money through Pinterest, I highly suggest starting a blog and writing about the products you sell, or the affiliate products you advertise. Otherwise, you’ll just be spinning your wheels. You don't have to be a stellar writer, you just have to connect the dots for your readers.
Part 2. Affiliate Marketing
This can be super confusing if you’ve never heard of affiliate marketing. Most of the “super affiliates” use sleazy tactics and do not share the secrets that you really need to know. This was my biggest pet-peeve when I first started blogging. I absolutely hate “bro marketing” where you get roped into giving up your email address in exchange for a crappy webinar where someone tells you to put away your phone and all distractions and then shows you photos of their expensive car, before launching into a bad power point presentation and an offer to purchase their $900 course at the end. It pisses me off actually, because they never gave you anything of value and expect you to open up your wallet.
Online marketing doesn’t work that way.
At least not successful online marketing.
The best way to use affiliate marketing with Pinterest is to write a blog post about a product and then pin the blog post.
This method generates a lot more clicks and thus, affiliate income, than you would have if you only linked the pin directly to the product itself. Certainly try both, but if you really want to increase passive income using Pinterest, I highly recommend using your blog.
If you have no idea how to get started with a blog, this completely free download (below) will walk you through the process step-by-step.
It was one of the first “free” digital products that I ever created. In fact, I originally put it together for a few friends, because each of them wanted to learn how to get a beautiful blog set up as quickly as possible, but I just didn’t have the capacity to sit down with each of them and walk them through it step by step.
Instead, it led to the creation of this comprehensive guide, where I share everything I learned from spending nearly 14 years in corporate and agency marketing. You can be assured that you’re getting solid information…not just what I learned while creating my own blog. I’ve created websites for literally hundreds of clients.
Enter your email address and you can get started instantly, for free!
If you don’t already have a blog (or if you do but you need some professional advice) here is a glimpse of what’s included in the guide:
1. How to choose your name and topic
2. How to start with the tech (i.e.: WordPress)
3. How to plan your content
4. How to monetize
5. How to increase traffic and ultimately profit
Part 3: Pin Design
Pin design may sound basic, like something you've already heard before. But it's super important. Pinterest is the place to see pretty, feminine pins, but often times people will use a cursive font that is hard to read, or put too much text on their pin design.
If you want to make money on Pinterest you have to use the types of pins that have been proven to generate hundreds of thousands of clicks. In the industry, this is called “click through rate.”
In the mini-course, I go over exactly what a good pin is vs a bad pin.
I teach what I've learned both by marketing my own Pins on Pinterest, as well as what I learned about color and typography after spending 14 years in corporate marketing.
Literally, I know of people who made only $100 with their pin design, and then after a few adjustments, the next day made $1,800. And it was all due to changing what her pin looked like.
Part 4: Pinterest Specific SEO
Don’t let those three letters “SEO” scare you. This is just a fancy way to describe how to choose the right words to write your Pinterest Boards and Pin Descriptions. This is a critical piece of the puzzle.
When I first started using Pinterest, I labeled my boards like this:
But the reality is, having boards like that will not bring in the big bucks. It’s important to have that right kind of board titles and descriptions to generate the right kind of traffic to your blog.
In the mini-course, I provide a series of videos that literally walk you through the process of how exactly to choose the right SEO words to use for your Pinterest board names and descriptions so that you can generate more profit and more traffic.
Listen I’m not a self-proclaimed guru who has some special talent that you don’t have.
I am just a regular person who didn’t give up, even when my husband thought it sounded crazy when I told him I was going to create a business using Pinterest.
You can do this too!
Thanks for reading and I hope you’ll give the mini-course a try! It’s jam packed with everything you need, including links to video tutorials and downloadable worksheets.
Limited Time: Private Coaching Group
So here's the deal, last year I started a free Facebook group, but at the time, I hadn’t yet created my “mini-course” and I wasn’t even sure what I was going to use the group for. I just knew that I wanted to connect with other bloggers, business owners, and online entrepreneurs in a safe and “spam free” environment.
My plan for the future of the groups is this: right now, it is free and open to join, but once I complete the full online course, I’ll only be inviting course members to the group because I already know I won’t be able to keep up with two groups. Between my clients and the sheer number of emails I answer in a day, I know I will have to make a choice. It’s a great time to jump in now (while it's still free!) if you’re interested.
Inside the group, you’ll find a safe place to ask questions, get encouragement, share your dreams and your business with other women, potentially get clients, participate in the share threads and connect and collaborate with other bloggers, social media influencers, and online entrepreneurs.