Earlier this month I had the pleasure of teaching a Musicians’ Yoga workshop at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. Yoga was a real revelation for me as a student, a total game-changer in fact, so I was really excited to be able to share some of the things I’ve learnt with students myself and perhaps even make it easier for them to understand what specific tools would help them as musicians and why (something that took me years to find out).
From Brainstorm to Freeze
At first, I was full of ideas, filling my brainstorm document with them but as the workshop date drew closer, I became hesitant to really sit down and carve out a solid plan. I wasn’t quite sure why it was but I could feel I was avoiding it.
The Joys of Imposter Syndrome
Welcome to the joys of imposter syndrome. It’s basically a fancy way of describing self-doubt and one of the ways it manifests is a fear of being discovered as a fraud. This was one of the biggest revelations for me when I started having coaching sessions in 2018. Other musicians doubt themselves as well? Really? So many of them that this has a special name?
Other People Have It?
Yep. Up to 75% of humans experience imposter syndrome in some way in their lives. In fact, the more successful you become, the higher the stakes in other words, the more likely you are to come across it. Just google celebrities that experience imposter syndrome and see for yourself.
Back to my workshop preparation, it turns out I exhibited one of the three main tendencies when it comes to imposter syndrome – procrastination. Once I identified what was happening, I started diligently preparing the class and in doing so, I unknowingly transitioned into the second coping strategy – overpreparing. :) The third one is quitting by the way and I’m happy to say this never crossed my mind.
So how did I get out of it? In my case, it took:
Recognizing what was happening. I’m experiencing self-doubt.
Embracing it. This is essentially a mechanism that’s trying to keep me safe.
Having a support mechanism. These are people you can talk to about it. In my case a coach, a mastermind group.
Replacing the stories in my head with new proactive ones.
“I’m here to share the benefits of yoga and it’s ok if I look a bit silly in the process.” :)
So what about you? Have you ever experienced imposter syndrome? What do you find helps you overcome it? Feel free to hit reply and let me know.
PS: If you’d like to find out more about self-doubt, listen to this interview with professional coach Claire Husselbee in the Wellbeing for Musicians Facebook group.
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