Culture

7 Creative Ways To Deal With The Fear That You’re Not Good Enough

Imposter syndrome, man. It’s that little voice that tenses your shoulders, causes knots in your belly, and tells you that you’re not good enough. “You’re a fraud,” it says, “you don’t know what you’re doing, and pretty soon everyone at work or school is going to see you for the fake that you are.”

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Credit: ABC

“Latinas Think Big,” a site devoted to Latina empowerment, breaks down possible reasons why imposter syndrome impacts us in a particularly big way:

With rare exception, Latinas are often cast in less than leading roles—we apparently make credible maids, cooks, secretaries, baby sitters or nannies. No doubt, all of those are noble jobs that have fed countless  families and put children through school. But think back on the number of times a Latina has played the role of a successful lawyer, engineer, CEO or therapist in film or television. Can’t think of many, right? As a consequence, those of us who are in those roles often have that unique burden of proving that indeed we are legitimate players in those settings. It’s no surprise– Latinas have two career challenges: Doing the hard work that your professional duties require and keeping the assumptions others make of us in check.

So how can you combat it? Here are some tips:

1. Be your own Kanye.

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Credit: Nickelodeon / Tumblr

It’s SO easy to focus on the negative. A bad comment tends to stick with us longer than compliments.  Counteract this by being more like Kanye: 

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Credit: VEVO

Dude is his own best cheering squad. And the trick is, you don’t even have to be confident to practice being confident. Just using more positive language about yourself to yourself can lift you up. Talk the talk, and eventually you’ll believe it.

Here’s how to start: Keep track of your successes. Plop ’em into the “Notes” section on your phone or keep a running tab on your calendar. That meeting you led flawlessly? That essay everyone loved? That was all you, bb. Revel in it.

2. Sweep the sh*t away.

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Credit: CBS Films

It can be tempting to focus so much on all the (figurative, mostly) sh*t on your path that you forget to focus on the path itself. You become caught up in the little mistakes, mishaps and missteps that you begin forgetting your bigger goal. When you have a specific goal and purpose — whether it’s giving a presentation without being nervous or earning a big promotion — it’s easier to not sweat the small setbacks in the grand scheme of things. So stop focusing on the sh*t. Wipe your feet and keep going. (Again, figuratively. I hope.)

3. Be jealous. For real.

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Credit: Disney Channel

Jealousy can actually be a super useful emotion if approached in the right way. It reveals what we want, and we can work on ourselves accordingly. Are you jealous of someone else’s writing or people skills? Awesome. Now you know that are things about yourself that you should focus on the most. Let the things you’re jealous of and the people you view as competition lead you to becoming the best version of YOU.

4. Look to a mentor who isn’t a cheerleader.

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Credit: Paramount Pictures

The academic and professional worlds are daunting enough even if you’re not dealing with feeling like you don’t belong. Having someone who’s been through it all to guide you makes it a little easier. And know that a mentor isn’t there to cheer you up or cheer you on: They’re teaching you and making you better by pointing out your mistakes and how you can improve upon them. If imposter syndrome tells you that you don’t belong because you’re not good enough, a tough mentor will let you know that you’re good enough to invest their time in. Put another way: You’re good enough now to become great later.

How do you get one? Start asking questions to someone at work you admire — specific questions on how you could improve, and see whether a rapport is formed. You can also sign up for mentors through your college, or through a variety of organizations.

5. Cultivate a support group. (And bring wine.)

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Credit: CBS

You don’t have to deal with this alone and, in fact, you shouldn’t. Beyond a mentor, look to others who are in a similar boat and at the same level. They don’t even have to work with you or even be in the same industry, although that certainly helps. Get together with friends for some healthy (limited) venting or a celebratory night out (with wine, lots of it) to mark your successes. These are the people who’ll be around when you need someone else to help counteract that negative voice in your head. Sign up for networking groups through your school or city, or make sure to have lunch with your coworkers instead of eating it alone at your desk.

6. Be supportive.

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Credit: NBC

Just as you need support from others, others will need it from you. Giving other people a pep talk helps build up stronger ties, and it can also help clarify things for yourself. We tend to be harder on ourselves than we are on other people, so helping others work through their issues in a gentle, constructive way can actually provide you with template on how to talk to yourself.

7. Take a damn break!

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Credit: Gifbin.com

Create balance in your life so that work and/or school don’t take up all of your mental and emotional energy. Slow down and enjoy your meals. Take a stroll during your lunch break. Savor your free time. Read a book you really love. Meditate before getting out of bed, or right before you sleep. Or just allow yourself the time, even just an hour, to veg out and watch Netflix with some gummy bears. Doing small things just for you will make you a healthier, happier person who is better able to deal with stress.

And remember:

You got this!


READ: These Latinos are Cashing in on Their Insta-Success

Have you felt “less than” at work? What tips do you have for combatting that feeling?

Latinas Are Sharing How They Protect Their Loved Ones From Coronavirus

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Latinas Are Sharing How They Protect Their Loved Ones From Coronavirus

padreezequiel / Instagram

As global leaders continue to instruct the public to stay at home and self-quarantine amidst the Coronavirus pandemic scare, we looked to our Latinas on Instagram. Curious to see how you all are handling the situation and assuring loved ones stay safe, we asked “what ways are you trying to keep your loved ones safe?”

Here’s what you had to say!

Keeping up with health measures.

“My parents (64 & 66) are staying active by gardening, going for walks, and spring cleaning. We are all staying hydrated, taking vitamins, and not going out. We are ordering everything we may need online or for pickup. We are also airing out our house daily.”– miss_davila27

Shopping for groceries online.

“Getting our groceries through instacart. I’ve been social distancing for years, so it pays off when you’re autistic and society already looks down upon people with disabilities.”– gnerdbriizy

Picking up pharmaceuticals for older family members.

“Please offer to pick up your loved ones medications from their pharmacy. Pharmacy distributors are currently allocating medications, meaning it’s difficult to get a hold on medications. And since lately we are taking every day day-by-day, smaller neighborhood pharmacies are worried about being forced to close for the mean time due to low stock. PLEASE OFFER TO PICK UP YOUR LOVED ONES MEDICATIONS AT THEIR PHARMACY”–theblurple

Eating the right kinds of foods.

“Making sure my husband is eating nutrient dense foods”– simply_bea_

Checking in on abuelos.

“Making sure my Abuelita’s r good. N my familia n I go get the things they need.”– nayelly_bean

Getting your exercise on lock.

“FaceTimed my mom last night (who is elderly & not the healthiest) to make sure she’s using those dumbbells at home while quarantining. Quarantine does not = sitting around doing nothing, I told her 😂😂💪🏽💪🏽 she probably hates me now.”–drtyd87

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez And ‘Roma’ Actress Yalitza Aparicio Are Working On A Project Together

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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez And ‘Roma’ Actress Yalitza Aparicio Are Working On A Project Together

YalitzaAparicio / Twitter

Ever since her breakout role in Alfonso Cuarón’s “Roma,” indigenous Mexican actress Yalitza Aparicio has made an effort to support the very domestic workers she played a part in representing on screen. Now the former schoolteacher is taking her role as an activist for domestic workers by fighting for the community. And with her, she’s brought on a major advocate.

In an effort to further the discussion regarding domestic worker’s rights, Aparicio has paired up with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.)

During a meeting set in Washington, D.C. the two women are said to have talked about the rights of domestic workers worldwide.

In a post to their respective social media pages, the two Latinas praised each other for their efforts.

“When you fight for the rights of domestic workers, it’s not only for and by those women, but also so that their children can have a better future.’ These inspiring words from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez I will hold forever in my heart,” Aparicio wrote in a post on Wednesday that was written in Spanish. “I had the honor of meeting this strong, talented and brave woman who works day after day to improve the social conditions in her country. Thanks to our meeting, we can listen to each other and share our point of view about the rights of domestic workers.”

In a tweet of her own, AOC described meeting Aparicio as an honor.

“It was an honor to meet you, @YalitzaAparicio,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote in a reply that was also written in Spanish. “You are an inspiration for women and workers around the world. Thank you for the conversation. Together, we fight for the rights of domestic workers.”

In 2018, Aparicio shot to fame for her role as Cleo in the Spanish-language film “Roma.”

Aparicio played the part of woman working in the household of a middle-class family in Mexico and garnered her much praise. For her role, Aparicio also earned an Oscar nomination. She has since worked to use her platform as a place to elevate the voices of indigenous peoples, domestic workers across the globe and women.