The Imposter Syndrome

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Do you feel like a fake? Are you waiting for the day that someone will discover that all your success was brought about by luck?

You’re not alone.

According to this article in Inc. Magazine, as many as 70% of all people feel like a fake at some time. Back in the 1970’s, psychologists studied this phenomenon, dubbed “The Imposter Syndrome.”

The Imposter Syndrome is divided into three sub-categories:

  • Feeling like a fake
  • Attributing success to luck
  • Discounting and downplaying success

And it isn’t just new entrepreneurs that feel this way. According to this article from CalTech, it’s the high-achievers and the already-successful who suffer the most. The CalTech article goes on to discuss ways you can overcome your Imposter Feelings.

This topic came up recently at one of my mastermind group meetings. A mastermind participant, a highly-successful and sought-after author and entrepreneur, said she was just waiting for someone to discover that she didn’t know anything, really, about her topic because she didn’t have a Ph.D. (although she’s written three books on the topic, has studied it for over 10 years, has major sponsorship endorsements from large corporations, and an education and product line to go along with the books). Her worst fear: that some interviewer will ask, “Who are YOU to write about this topic??”

In the end analysis, a reality-check is in order. Have you accomplished things because of your intellect, your creativity, your tenacity, your heart? For every failure you’ve had, haven’t you also had an equal success?

Each day, when you catch yourself in the bad habit of moaning about everything that went wrong, reach for “balance” and remind yourself of all the things you did right. And when you have a big success, reward yourself and celebrate this wonderful moment!

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Category: Managing Projects, Tasks & Time
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Do 50 Percent of Small Businesses Really Fail?

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Legend has it that 50 percent of all small businesses fail.

According to an article on MSNBC, two-thirds of small businesses make it past the two-year anniversary. However, only 44% reach their four-year anniversary. Ouch.

The news isn’t all bad. Built into this model are 10 industries that seem to have the highest risk. Failure rates are not consistent across all industries. (See article for this list of 10 industries.)

According to most sources, it seems like the same things bring down a business: lack of business and marketing skill (both planning and implementation of plans), poor cash flow, and heavy debt. Factoring in the risky industries, it may be that some industries are way above that 44% survival rating, while others are drastically below it.

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Category: Business Strategy & Planning
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