You wake up, you open LinkedIn or your news app, what do you see? Layoffs, layoffs and more layoffs.
Take a breath.
Then, perhaps a tweet like the one below populates your feed, and you have a good chuckle or suddenly heave a sigh of relief.
Nonetheless, imposter syndrome is real, and it’s getting the best of us, especially in the current economy. Google it, you’ll get close to 8.7 billion hits for the search term.
And so, we have brainstormed the EHF method to encourage you to look at imposter syndrome through a different lens! What does EHF stand for? We’d never thought you’d ask.
Choose to embrace the feelings.
Be honest with yourself and others.
Solicit feedback regularly.
Let’s share a few resources for each one to get your wheels spinning.
Choose to embrace the Imposter Syndrome
With so many other things in life, it’s hard to embrace imposter syndrome when it feels like you’re doing something wrong or not living up to your potential. Well, you know what? If you were doing everything perfectly all the time, you wouldn’t be looking to improve yourself or keep growing. Are we right, or are we right?
Here are 3 resources on how to start practicing a warm embrace with yourself.
- Meditation and/or mindfulness – becoming even more self-aware of your feelings is the first step towards accepting them. We have shared a list of free meditation apps at your fingertips.
- Acknowledging others/shoutouts – an easy way to make yourself feel better is helping others feel better too, and giving them a nod of approval. This list has 70 ways of doing that.
- Seeking a mentor – speaking to someone who has more experience than you in the industry is always a good way to calm any anxiety or gain additional confidence. There are different ways to find mentors, check out the resources shared by the Pragmatic Engineer.
Choose to be honest with yourself and your team
Our CTO Beier says it best “while you should always believe in yourself, you want your team to perceive you as someone who may not know everything but always trying your best, own the mistake and learn from it.”
We have all made mistakes in our careers, and will continue doing so. No code is perfect.
Here are 2 practices to integrate into your workplace to start practicing more honesty and openness.
- Choose a colleague to confide in and let them know what is going well for you and not so well. Doing this regularly, will also help them help you.
- Join developer communities, whether that is on Slack, Discord, or Reddit. Share your mistakes so that you can see that others are making the same mistakes (and hopefully, that will make you feel better) and learn new approaches to tackling a problem. We have curated a list of communities.
Choose to ask for feedback, not just once!
- Set up quarterly reviews with your team lead. Lattice has some great free templates to get you going. Scheduling more regular feedback sessions will help you become a better software developer.
- Take a data-driven approach where possible. We use Amplitude to help us. Are there more bug fixes this week than last week, and does that have any indication on how I was feeling that week? It is good to use data to check in with how you’re feeling and how that is impacting your approach to tackling a problem.
- Write down your own goals, whether that is weekly, monthly or yearly. At the end of your chosen time period, review them and think about what you were able to achieve and where you would have liked to do better. It is easy to forget our goals, so writing them down is a great way to keep yourself accountable. We’re a huge fan of the year compass.
We hope the resources are a good source for you to continue your lifelong quest of managing your imposter syndrome. As we mentioned, there are close to 9.5 billion search queries for imposter syndrome, aka lots of resources out there. So whenever you feel ready, take some more time to dive deeper. If you need one final source of inspiration, read this article titled the question to ask yourself when imposter syndrome strikes. And remember, do your best to focus on what you can control, you’re doing great!