Why Do I Feel Like an Imposter?

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 8 Oct 2019

Member Reviews

Pros: This is a good book. It showed me steps that I can take to realize my greatness. Plus, there are a lot of people that suffer from the same syndrome. I just have to realize that I got here on my own and remember to keep going.

Cons: Starts off a little boring, but the overall message is there.
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I've been dealing with varying degrees of impostor syndrome for years, but it hit hardest a few months ago when my cat was diagnosed with diabetes and I'm now responsible for injecting him twice a day. Through this book I'm learning to work through it, and though it's getting better at work I still have a long way to go in terms of administering injections without medical training. I'll keep working on it and turning to this book for help.
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The author's painstaking research and attention to detail is obvious in the writing of this book.  There were many facts that I only discovered after reading this!
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This book strongly resonated with me, as imposter syndrome has dogged me for a long time; beginning when I staed  at university and continuing to the present at work and socially.  

Dr. Sandi Mann has neatly condensed the research into this short and easy to read book, self-assessment quizzes, case studies, and tips for overcoming imposter syndrome.   I particularly liked how Dr Mann looked at how expectations around gender and social roles lead to different types of imposter syndrome for women, men and parents, as well as covering how IS can affect teenagers and students. 

Why Do I Feel Like an Imposter? has definitely given me some perspective on my fears and some techniques to try out.
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"Why Do I Feel Like An Impostor? How to Understand and Cope With the Impostor Syndrome" by Dr. Sandi Mann is a well written guide to help any person or professional that may have felt incompetent or unsure about themselves, despite the years of training, the competencies, and degrees earned. A study has shown that over 70% of us probably suffer from Impostor Syndrome (IS), where you may believe that you are inappropriately claiming to be somebody you are not despite all the appropriate training, education, license, and competency. It is a condition that can be debilitating and affects our ability to confidently perform our roles in relationships, our jobs, or our professions. It can also affect ones ability to be a better parent or role in any relationship. 
Dr. Sandi Mann is an expert in this field as a chartered academic psychologist and a senior psychology lecturer teaching clinical applied psychology. Dr. Mann also specializes in conditions such as anxiety, depression, phobias, panic attacks, trauma, obsessive compulsive disorder to name a few. The first couple of chapters explains the Impostor Syndrome with quizzes and assessments. the next 5 chapters goes over how the Impostor Syndrome is experienced by different groups of people such as(1)  women in the work force, (2) male stereotypes, (3) imposters outside the work force such as the do-gooders or those that keep up appearances of a perfect life, (4) perfect parents, and (5) Student pressures. Each of the chapters are further explained through case studies to help with real life scenarios followed by tips to work through those feelings or syndrome. I love that the strategies are presented to help manage Impostor Syndrome and feel the success, gain confidence and diminish insecurities. 
Overall, I highly recommend this book for anyone that may have these feelings fulfilling their role in their personal relationships and also in their professional life. This is a good reference and an excellent read written very clearly with real life strategies to help with this issue. 

Thank you to NetGalley, Watkins Publishing and the author for an advanced readers copy of this ebook for honest and objective review.
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Have you ever had a small voice inside you telling you that a recent success was down to luck rather than hard work? Have you ever felt nervous that someone else is going to find out you that you have no idea what you're doing? Then you could have experiences Imposter Syndrome; personally, I've mainly felt this way in my work place and while that's common there are so many other angles I hadn't considered, particularly around a male experience as well parenthood.


This is a great guide to something that affects so many people, whether you feel like this aligns to you, someone you know or if you've been cheerfully oblivious to the fact that some people live part or all of their lives feeling like 'frauds' then I think there's something to be gained from this book.  It includes quizzes to help separate the core different variations and if you think you align to one or more it even has suggestions for how to start overcoming those feelings.
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As an online business owner who hears about Impostor Syndrome a lot in the online space but hasn’t ever identified with it personally, I was intrigued to read this. Turns out my perfectionism is a form of IS!  Fascinating read, easy to understand and relatable. The quizzes were really valuable early on as you are then drawn in to understand more about yourself.
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Why Do I Feel Like an Imposter is an excellent handbook on Imposter Syndrome (although the author argues that it's not a syndrome at all; rather, it's a natural part of human behavior). I frequently struggle with IS and in the past, I used to let it get the better of me, but with therapy (and LOTS of constant reminders to myself) I've more or less overcome it. The thing I like about this book is that it doesn't lump everyone into a single category. It breaks down IS according to population: men at work, women at work, parents, teens, students, etc. Each chapter focuses on a particular group and discusses the "symptoms" of their version of imposter syndrome, gives theories about how it came to be, and suggests exercises for convincing yourself that you're not an imposter. If you're not sure what kind of imposter syndrome you have, or if you think you have multiple kinds, Why Do I Feel Like an Imposter can help you. The book can also help you support others by pointing them in the right direction. 

The only drawback to this book is that if you've already done a basic search on Imposter Syndrome, the information in the book may not be new. Still, I recommend it because the organization allows you to easily flip to the right section depending on who you're mentoring.
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A good book for those who are accomplished individuals but nevertheless, feel like they are faking it. I believe this is an extreme form of low self esteem. The writing is intelligent and compassionate.
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Helpful & Insightful
This book is a necessary read for anyone who suffers from Imposter Syndrome (IS) or has a loved one who deals with it. Before this book, I had no idea 70% of us have this issue. I thought it was like the 1% Clearly, everyone is ridiculously good at faking or hiding it!

After reading a book, Burnout: The Secret to Unlocking the Stress Cycle on a similar subject, I had this thought that there are probably those who are more likely to experience burn-out simply because they didn't like their job but for no other reason than they felt they weren't good for it. So the constant 'trying too hard' and working harder, to prevent getting exposed as a 'fake', was getting to them. That is no way to live! Yet, for someone with IS, it's the only way to survive. The only way to keep our reputations intact, our means of income steady, and our lives stable.

I've been there: wishing classes were cancelled because I couldn't stand another day of 'faking it'. Even if I understood the work, or was doing well, I would attribute it to something or someone else. If this sounds like you, or someone you know, this book would be most beneficial. 

From Dr. Sandi Mann's neatly condensed book, you'll learn how best to minimise the symptoms of IS from taking over your life. I had no idea this was possible! IS taints everything, dents your success, happiness and accomplishments. It gets in the way but there are ways to give yourself a much-needed 'reality check'. It's not true, the stuff it tells you, it limits you. (I need to remind myself of this too!) We need to own our good moments, and keep the bad stuff from ruining them.

IS is something that lingers. It's either always present or in the background. Dr. Mann offers a thorough guide to understanding and identifying its characteristics in individuals. There are different types of 'Imposters': the perfectionist, the striving parent, the high-achieving student, the self-employed entrepreneur, the devout religious leader etc.... We, 'imposters', are everywhere.

From the beginning, I thought that the people who didn't know IS was a 'thing' are truly missing out. Their lives are also worse for it. All imposters have contemplated quitting the source of their misery. Or, refusing that promotion or salary bonus. Most of us don't act on these beliefs- we know where they come from. But those who don't? They'll quit and never fulfil their potential.

This book raises awareness and understanding massively: it answers questions I didn't know I had.
I recommend!

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I received this book through NetGalley for review consideration. All opinions are honest and completely my own.
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I found this book to be a really good primer for someone who hasn't really explored the subject in very much detail, and even though it is very well-researched, well-organized, includes self-assessment quizzes, and does try to answer the roots of where impostor syndrome comes from, as well as why women may be more pre-disposed to it than men, I found the book to be not really saying anything new or groundbreaking. I would have liked more in the way of solutions. Most people reading the book suspect that they might have, or know they have, Impostor Syndrome. So although I felt it was important to explore where it comes from, how it evolved, and answers questions about the reasons why, I felt it did not offer a solid enough jumping off point for addressing the matter of what the reader can do with this information. I did appreciate that the book included exercises, but again, felt that this was more of a book for someone who has no background in impostor syndrome and is looking for a comprehensive crash-course.
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Excellent read and a book you can go back to time and time again. It is an interesting book. 
Thank you to both NetGalley and Watkins Publishing for giving me the opportunity to read this book
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I am never big on self-help books, but as an academic with SEVERE imposter syndrome (I meet five of seven criteria for people at risk of IS) I felt I needed more information on the subject. Being a post-doc and a lecturer I also wanted to access resources I could point to my students in case they came asking me for  advice. This book was really good in this respect. Reasonably short, the tone NEVER condescending, detailed and clear. In its 8 chapters, it explores the phenomenon of IS syndrome at length, presenting possible causes, how to understand yourself better, and suggests practical ways to put the feeling to rest. I especially liked the presence of case studies, and the bits about the history of the study of IS. 
I will definitely recommend it to my students and peers the next time the topic comes up.
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I believe each of us has experienced the feeling of imposter syndrome at one time or another in our lives and careers. Starting in school, we are graded against one another and compared to each other, so no wonder we often feel we don't measure up.

Why Do I Feel Like an Imposter? How to Understand and Cope with Imposter Syndrome by Dr. Sandi Mann is an excellent resource book that explains the syndrome, offers several helpful self-assessment quizzes and provides excellent case studies. Dr. Mann's tips for recognizing and overcoming imposter syndrome are practical. 

I liked how the author looked at various forms of imposter syndrome: men, women, parents, teens, and students. 
The information presented is helpful and a good resource to have on hand. I would recommend this book.
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I blame our parents, relatives and teachers. They always made us feel worthless, dumb, and small  and held up others as being so much smarter. I have often felt like this and have even made Dean's List in college! My first academic job, I was actually asked by an aunt "Are you smart enough to work there?"  Still feel like I'm faking it after 30 years in my field. I am grateful I've never been caught out and am close to retiring. All the brilliant people on this plant likely feel like frauds. Sad  so many of us feel like this. I'm sure it has had a profound effect on humanity's future. How much better of a world it would be if everyone's self esteem was higher and we felt more confident.
I've been waiting for this book for a long time. Sorry it was a bit late for me and my career, but I certainly hope it finds it's way into younger hands.
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Imposter syndrome is something that impacts so many of us nowadays especially when we live in such a fast-paced, Instagram filtered world. This book explores what imposter syndrome is, why so many of us experience imposter syndrome, and also the different forms that imposter syndrome can take. This is a really insightful read and I would recommend it to anyone who has experience of imposter syndrome.
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