Ep 133 – How to Handle Imposter Syndrome in the Workplace

I recently launched a series here on Workology focused on women in the workplace. The feedback from my first blog post was clear. I received many emails, DMs and phone calls sharing their stories and wanting more.

A recent study found a third of millennials experience self-doubt at work, with 40% of women saying they felt intimidated by senior people, compared to 22% of men asked. How do we navigate our personal sea of self-doubt? I’m hoping that today’s episode will get you moving and thinking in the right direction.

 Episode 133: Women at Work and Imposter Syndrome with Sheri Guyse (@myjrny)

Sheri Guyse is a life coach who helps her clients, many of them women navigate, address, and tackle the subject of imposter syndrome. She talks with us about some of the common obstacles and stuff that all of us have to work through. Sheri says that messages are constantly coming at us how we have to work harder, be braver, and struggle when what we really need is to take a pause and have compassion and a self-love for ourselves. We’re often our own worst critics and pushing too hard leads to self-doubt when what we need is empathy and awareness in order to grow as people and develop that confidence to move beyond faking it until we make it. She says the best way to gain confident and quiet self-doubt that happens as a result of imposter syndrome is to be kind to yourself.

Messages constantly about how we have to work harder, be braver and struggle. Suggests that women take a pause if self-doubt comes up. Suggests empathy and awareness. You can’t do confidence. The real way is to gain confidence and quiet self-doubt is to slow down. That starts by being kind to yourself.

40% of women surveyed experienced self-doubt & were intimidated by senior leadership at work #workology #womenatwork Click To Tweet

Aside for personal coaching and group coaching, Sheri also teaches a workshop called Inner Empathy. This workshop helps you better understand what the person or people around you are in front of you is going through and communicating that. Part of inner empathy is being kind to others and bringing empathy to yourself.

The Things We Tell Ourselves

One of my favorite guilty pleasures late at night is watching videos from the Truth Bomb. The video below is one that I talk with Sheri about on the podcast and dives more into the fact that we are our harshest critics and giving ourselves pause and grace is the key to building that confidence and overcoming imposter syndrome.

Imposter syndrome is real, but it’s only one of the obstacles and challenges that we face in our lives today. As women, we are trying to juggle it all, and the older we get the more that patterns emerge in our own lives that we have a choice to address or ignore. One of the things I love about Sheri, and she talks about it in the podcast is her own commitment and journey to self-development and growth. Sheri has inspired me to do more personal work on myself too. She leads by example for her friends, family, and clients.

What is a Life Coach?

Sheri shares about how someone works with a life coach. She helps her clients talk through situations and helps them on a path to self-work and personal discovery. Sometimes that means taking a class, reading, and book or talking through some tough topics coming to some personal realizations. Most of her work is  1 on 1 clients. These appointments are twice a month over video chat. Her coaching approach isn’t static. Every client’s work and life coaching program is unique and comes from an intuitive place.

I'm listening to life coach @myjrny on the @workology #podcast! #workplace #careers Click To Tweet

Sheri shares that she is an avid reader. She recommends having the following items on your nightstand. They include The Courage Habit (just released), How to Stop Feeling Like Shit, The Mask of Masculinity, The Body Keeps the Score. Sheri also recommends the following podcasts: Dear Sugar, Death, Sex, and Money and Invisibilia. 

Giving yourself a little pause and grace can really go a long way. Sheri provides us with a nice reminder that the real way to gain confidence is to slow down and be kind to yourself. I just spend some time this last weekend taking time for me and doing the things that I like which includes diving into The Mask of Masculinity book that Sheri recommended.

Connect with Sheri Guyse on LinkedIn.


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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Learn more about Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource, and the host of the Workology Podcast. More of her blogs can be found here.


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