Are you one of the many people out there who struggles with Imposter Syndrome? Not sure what it is? Today we’re chatting through the definition of Imposter Syndrome, what it feels like, and how to overcome it in your own life as an Etsy seller. Feeling like you belong and are worthy of having success is SO important! So continue reading if you struggle with feeling like you don’t belong on Etsy and let’s push through to helping you KNOW you belong and deserve all the Etsy shop success in the world!
What is it exactly?
Have you ever felt like you seriously don’t belong on Etsy? Like at any moment, you’ll be exposed as not knowing anything about the products you’re making? Or maybe you struggle with this plus feeling like you really don’t deserve to have your Etsy shop or for it to be successful? All of that is Imposter Syndrome. And you’re absolutely not alone in these feelings!
We’re all in this together
Personally, I quite literally deal with this on a daily basis. There is not a single day that goes by that these feelings don’t try to creep in through the cracks of my life and try their best to bring me down. For so long I had no idea what this was! I just knew it felt lonely and like I didn’t deserve all the good things I had because I was this big fake.
Turns out I wasn’t alone in this and neither are you. A quick Google search resulted in my finding that an estimated 70% of people are currently experiencing imposter feelings or have at some point in their lives. And it’s all of us really. Etsy sellers, artists, musicians, actors, teachers, CEO’s, etc. Imposter Syndrome is not bias as to whom it affects.
No overnight cure
Does everyone in the world struggle with this? Nope. Does that mean that those of us who do struggle are less intelligent? Also no! Studies have shown that the only difference between those who feel like imposters and those who don’t is our thoughts. Which is really great, because if it’s a matter of thinking differently, we can do that and overcome feeling like an imposter! But like all new habits or learned activities, we do have to practice at retraining our brains in this area.
So what do we do??
There are SO many great articles, TED talks and books about this very topic, but below I’m mentioning some of the tips that help me deal with and overcome feeling like an imposter:
1. Talk about it
The worst thing I can do when I’m feeling like I don’t belong in the creative space I’ve chosen to work in, is to talk about it! Talking it through with a mentor or friend is always a HUGE help, and helps to remind me that I’m not alone and I definitely shouldn’t trust the lies I’m telling myself.
2. Know what’s real and what isn’t
Because I’ve chosen to build a career around something that’s constantly evolving and changing (I’m a graphic designer) there are times that I honestly do feel stupid. I’m sure you’ve had this same thing happen if you’ve learned a new way to make your products or had to learn something new with technology in general. What we must try and remind ourselves is that just because we may feel stupid, doesn’t mean we are. Identify when you’re telling yourself this lie, correct it, and keep moving forward.
3. Everything will not be perfect
I am the hardest on myself when I feel like I’m not learning something new fast enough. I can go from 0-100 in the loathing self talk if my perfectionism kicks in and sends my brain into overdrive. Here’s the truth: everything cannot always be perfect. This does not make you less of an artist or creator. You’re going to make mistakes (this is coming from the girl who literally just lost several design projects and has to start over from scratch because…..technology🤓) but you MUST have grace for yourself. Just because you make a mistake does NOT make you an imposter. It makes you human.
4. Don’t beat yourself up
So you’re human and you make mistakes. So do I (remember those design files?), and that’s ok! The trick is to try and not hang onto it and beat yourself over the head with it. Of course it’s ok to be angry and frustrated. Feel those emotions, acknowledge them, and then keep moving forward! We’ve got an entire blog post on failure and moving forward! Just make sure you remember that failure is an opportunity to learn and grown. This is the beauty of it! It’s an invaluable teacher.
5. Rewrite the narrative in your head
Ok so it happened. You’re in a situation where you’re seriously feeling like a total imposter and all those negative thoughts about how you’re not good enough and you’re gonna be “found out” are starting to flood in. Stop right there. This is the moment in which you MUST unlearn what you would normally tell yourself. Instead of allowing those thoughts of “wait until they find out I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing” control you, change the narrative to “I’m learning something new, I’m growing through this, I may not know exactly how to tackle this completely, but I’m sure as heck smart enough to figure it out!”
6. Mental pictures are everything
I’ve written about visualizing success a lot, but I’m not sure I can’t say it too many times! Visualizing your Etsy shop succeeding, imagining what that feels like, really digging deep into those feelings, that will make all the difference in the world! I mean, it’s a lot better than the alternative of seeing impending doom. You will absolutely become what you think about the most. So get to imagining all that Etsy shop success!
7. Fake it ’til you make it
This is not a lie. This simply means that there are going to be times and situations when you literally aren’t going to have any idea what you’re doing. You’re going to have to figure it out as you go, but you better believe you can absolutely do this! Google can become your best friend and so can YouTube! We literally live in an age when information is right at the tip of our fingers, so if you don’t know exactly how to do something, act with absolute confidence because you’re smart enough to figure it out! And then, do everything you need to do to make this a reality.
Changing the way we think and talk to ourselves is the key here. Yeah, we might not always feel like we belong and we’re just a bunch of fakes. But the truth is, this isn’t true. If you’re passionate about learning your craft and building your Etsy shop, you have the power to make it happen!
What are some ways you fight imposter syndrome in your own life? We’d love to know what they are, so drop them in the comments below!
Happy selling, everyone!