Imposter Phenomenon

Imposter phenomenon is also known as imposter syndrome, imposterism, fraud syndrome, and imposter experience. People who experience this phenomenon persistently doubt their achievements and irrationally fear that they may be exposed as frauds. They generally attribute their accomplishments to mere luck or deception as they sincerely believe that they do not deserve their feats.

Other symptoms include having the unrealistic need to be the best, fearing failure as well as success, discounting praises, being guilty of achievements, and taking on numerous responsibilities. Furthermore, this syndrome is marked by the impostor cycle which begins with a task and is dealt with either by over preparation or procrastination followed by a frantic effort to meet the deadline. After a brief relief once the goal is achieved, the affected individual discounts praises as he/she feels that he/she is an impostor. This is then followed by another task and the cycle goes on.

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