Imposter Syndrome

Impostor syndrome can conjure up a negative connotation.  Why would you want to be something you’re not?  Psychology uses this term to define a behavior pattern but I’m referring to a relaxed definition.  It takes 10,000 hours (6-10 years) of your life to master something.  What if you want to be an expert in your business and don’t have this much time to invest?  We all must keep a roof over our heads in the meantime.

So, how do you speed up learning all you can about a new product or service or aspect of your business?   First, we could all use a little more focus in our lives.  Who is not easily distracted by daily tasks that are not directly impacting revenue in our pocket?   Block off time on your calendar for research or what I refer to as learning time.  Do it daily, weekly, monthly or whatever schedule makes the most sense.  By adding the task of learning this new element to your calendar it creates a priority.  Once you have a base of what you need to know to make a list of bullet points.  If this list will produce a list of questions or responses have your answers ready too.

As much as I cringe as I say it you should “role play”.   Naturally, practice makes perfect and if you can practice working out any kinks in your knowledge and your delivery the smoother you will be.  It’ a cycle to follow.   Have you read the “If you give a mouse a cookie” series of books to your children? If you aren’t familiar with the plot here’s how it goes – if you give a mouse a cookie, he’s going to ask for a glass of milk and so on.  It’s a comparable concept here.

If you spend some time starting with research and development, you can determine how to best market your product or services.   This R&D should include a market analysis of how your pricing should look and what is different about what you are doing versus everyone else working in this same space.   Once you have your glossy and pretty materials or however you will roll out your campaign it’s great to use Steven Covey’s method of starting with the end in mind.  How many new clients or current clients do you want using this new product or service?

Start with your practice round on your cat or anyone who will listen.  It’s better to practice on someone who can verbally give you feedback, so you can modify your presentation as needed.    Remember you can always make changes at any time based on several factors:  feedback, changes in the market, changes in your capabilities.  Be the imposter.  If you act in imposter syndrome long enough, you will graduate into the genuine article and no one will have noticed.

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