Among all the roles that a woman ever plays, motherhood stands apart. It is a lot for any woman to jump into the role and take the challenges head-on like a pro. And the complexity multiplies if the woman happens to be suffering from impostor syndrome. In a blink, everything changes around in her life when the doctors hand her over the baby. The new responsibilities, plus the constant insecurity and postpartum challenges, can be overwhelming. So how to deal with impostor syndrome as a mother? Let's learn more about the term and get tips on dealing with it from the examples of a few pathbreaker moms.
What is Impostor Syndrome?
The question blocks many minds to describe what exactly the term impostor syndrome is. Some of us aren't willing to accept that it does exist and is a natural mechanism. But now that we are at it, let's learn about it.
Impostor syndrome is the continuous feeling of fraud even when you accomplish your goals with all your efforts. The emotions overpower your belief in skill and abilities while justifying that your success is only because of your luck. You develop a fear that someday this might show everyone around that you did not deserve to be where you are.
Suffering from impostor syndrome as a mother puts you into a puddle of confusion. It makes you question every process you follow to take care of your baby. The life of new moms is an unpredictable affair as their schedules revolve around their babies. Trying to figure out how to do things right while calming the baby every time they cry could be immensely stressful for a new mom. It is only natural to feel lost and doubt your instincts as a mother. Even with all the bits of advice and preparation, you will not know it all. With the help of experiences and the below tips, you can surely overcome all the negativity and eventually get rid of them.
Tips to Deal with Impostor Syndrome
Understand That You Are Not Alone
New moms juggle with lots of thoughts at the back of their heads. They feel their mistakes are pathetic, and many fall into depression, not adjusting to the sudden change in their lives. Being a carefree woman to being obliged to do everything for a tiny person may not settle well early on in motherhood. So, instead of feeling sad and hurtful, understand that every mother initially goes through the same thoughts. But it is this time that strengthens them and teaches them to give their best.
You will be surprised to know that almost 85% of new moms start feeling anxious and doubt their parenting skills. It is upsetting to see the statistics, but here is the takeaway. You are not alone in it, and you have the option to do something about it. Give yourself credit for leading your way gracefully as a mom. Accept that the new life will be a topsy turvy ride but do not give up yet.
Yes, society and surroundings play an important part in shaping our situations but as long as you believe in them blindly. Dealing with impostor syndrome as a mother will bring you to the edges, pushing you to take all the blames for incompetence. The silence nudging the inner voice and learning your way with honesty. Sometimes you may break down and feel like you are not up for it, and that's when you have to tell yourself that it is okay. It's okay to fall, cry and get up. All it matters is you care, and when you care, you will learn everything you need to quiet that tone that blames you.
Impostor syndrome proliferates when people point fingers at a new mom all the time. Many times people will bombard you with numerous pieces of advice that you may not need. Every child is different, and so is the journey of a new mom. Hence, let people judge you for being your true self. Develop the wisdom to let them speak whatever they have to, but barge in to show them their way out if it gets excessive. It's your life, and when you stop paying heed to the opinions of others, you tackle impostor syndrome while also being an example to others in the same situation.
In the race of life, we are at the peak of times when women are going unmatched in every profession compared to their male counterparts. Women who post their maternal leaves join the back office and feel they aren't good parents for choosing a career over their babies. We indeed need to normalize women working post being a parent just as men do. However, women feeling all the stress should open up to someone they can seek counsel from in need. Doing that will help them overcome impostor syndrome by reflecting on their thoughts and addressing them positively.
Practice Affirmation and Confidence
There is no one better for your baby than you. Stop that negative self-talk comparing your life with others, and practice affirmation. Motherhood is the best phase for learning new things, bonding with a new life, and understanding the beauty of life. Sure, it can be stressful, but you will become strong and confident if you can address the issues you face. So take baby steps in the new role and enjoy the adventure.
Impostor syndrome is not all bad! I say it because it powers you by making you cautious about your choices. There are many successful leaders with impostor syndrome who claim to overcome it regularly through actions. So, instead of fighting it, learn to use it to your advantage. Revel in your imperfections while dealing with impostor syndrome as a mother.
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