These are the surprising benefits of imposter syndrome
About two out of five successful people think they are scammers and they just got lucky. Despite the evidence to the contrary. However, the so-called impostor syndrome does not only cause problems, as American researchers have now discovered.
aWhen two American psychologists coined the term “imposter syndromeIt was first mentioned in a scientific context in 1978, and they assumed it only affected women. Note that some women thought they stole their success and didn’t deserve it. Patients tended to think that they were too lucky or that others had overestimated their actual abilities.
In some affected, self-doubt is so pronounced that they consider themselves fraudsters and live in constant fear that they might one day be arrested. It is now known that men are also affected by this phenomenon.
For those who consider themselves fraudsters, the condition can lead to problems in the work environment as well as in private life. However, impostor syndrome can also be beneficial, according to US researchers Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) based on a new study. They published their results inManagement Journal Academy“.
But before we introduce you to the positive side of impostor syndrome despite all the self-doubt, it’s all about your self-assessment:
Impostor Syndrome: Those affected are usually really good team players
This seems surprising, right? Instead of trying to act vaguely, many successful people who think they haven’t achieved it themselves seem to try to work closely and well with others. In addition, these people also have particularly strong social skills that benefit them in their work environment. So, in a way, their self-doubt makes them more successful.
That was at least the result of evaluating data from 3,603 employees from a total of four different studies used by MIT researchers. Scholars suspect that self-proclaimed scammers may be going the extra mile to get along with their colleagues and do well, co-author Basima Tawfik explains in one press release. This would also be fine with their bosses:
The more they orient themselves towards others, the higher the rating of their personal effectiveness.
Those affected are productive – despite self-doubt
This is indicated by the evaluation of the data. For example, employees of a securities firm rated their colleagues, who describe themselves as fraudsters, as more effective in dealing with others and at the same time more productive. In general, it turns out that many alleged scammers often put a lot of effort into their work once they have interacted with others.
One study that MIT researchers reviewed included a survey of young doctors who were still in an apprenticeship program. Those who reported having more ideas similar to those of impostor syndrome also tended to be those who had better relationships with patients. They were rated by their patients as being more empathetic and better at listening.
However, impostor syndrome has serious consequences for the mental health of those affected
Evaluation of the four studies indicates that imposter syndrome is not permanent. According to Tawfiq, the longer those affected remain in their position, the less they will worry about being “arrested.” In some cases, those affected are less likely to question their success. In the future, more studies will examine whether and how impostor syndrome also affects other work skills such as creativity or initiative.
Although self-doubt enhances positive job traits among those affected, the MIT study also shows how significantly low self-esteem is. Bosses shouldn’t promote this further, according to job researcher Tawfiq. Quack thoughts can be toxic, especially in jobs where personal relationships are rare.
These tips can also help you in your day-to-day work:
“Total coffee aficionado. Travel buff. Music ninja. Bacon nerd. Beeraholic.”