dealing with imposter syndrome as a solopreneur

Dealing with imposter syndrome as a solopreneur

Wish you could manage your imposter syndrome? Imposter syndrome is very common for many solopreneurs — you are not alone in dealing with imposter syndrome as a solopreneur! Luckily, there are solutions to help you overcome imposter syndrome. This video will help you with that! You'll learn why it's so important to address your imposter syndrome, how it might be showing up in your business (and life), and 3 things you can do to manage your imposter syndrome.

Quick overview of what's in the video...

  • 0:00 Intro
  • 0:30 Imposter syndrome and solopreneurship — what it looks like (“it must have been a fluke/it’s pure luck!)
  • 1:00 Why imposter syndrome is such a big problem for so many solopreneurs — and how it holds you back in your business
  • 1:40 What imposter syndrome connects back to (and how you might logically “know” that you’re qualified, but you don’t FEEL it in your bones)
  • 2:40 How imposter syndrome has shown up in Sagan’s business
  • 3:50 How can we deal with imposter syndrome? What are the best ways to deal with it?
  • 4:20 Why you need to address the imposter syndrome and truly understand what’s going on here
  • 5:15 How we experience cognitive dissonance when we’re high achievers and are experiencing imposter syndrome
  • 5:40 When you understand what’s happening with your own feelings of being an imposter, then you can explore the best solutions. This is NOT a one-size fits all! It really depends on your unique situation as to what strategies will be best for processing and unpacking it!
  • 6:00 The first thing you can do to deal with imposter syndrome: put tangible evidence about your abilities front and centre (plus several examples)
  • 7:20 The second thing you can do to deal with imposter syndrome: be honest with yourself about the ways that imposter syndrome is holding you back (and what this does/doesn’t look like!)
  • 8:25 The third thing you can do to deal with imposter syndrome: hire a professional to support you in this
  • 9:05 How you can get one-on-one solopreneur coaching (with success and life coaching built into it) in the Solopreneur CEO 1:1 coaching program —
  • 9:30 How “feeling like” an imposter is different than “being” an imposter (an important differentiation — and also, you can both experience imposter syndrome AND also need to build up your skillset!)
  • 10:35 Wrap up


Are you a solopreneur who struggles with impostor syndrome? This is the video for you! 

My name is Sagan Morrow and I'm an anti hustle Productivity Strategist and internationally board certified Success and Life Coach who specializes in working with solopreneurs. Be sure to grab my free training the Anti Hustle Secrets to Solopreneur Success!

Let's get into today's video — dealing with impostor syndrome as a solopreneur. 

The imposter phenomenon might look like you feeling like a fraud, not believing that you are worthy or deserving of being in a particular room or having the success that you're getting; kind of like “oh, this is just a fluke, or it's pure luck that I've managed to get this far.”

This is really tricky for a lot of solopreneurs, because when you are your business and you don't have anyone else to turn to, when you're doing everything in that sort of silo, it can feel very jarring. You might feel like, “okay, I managed to get some clients or I've managed to get a lot of clients, I'm booked out all the time, but this is just a fluke! I'm just getting lucky. This might change tomorrow.” 

So if you get a lot of clients, but you're kind of thinking to yourself, “it's only a matter of time until they find me out! I'm an impostor. I don't deserve to be here,” or if you were concerned that your business could just dry up tomorrow or next week, then that might be a sign that you're struggling with this imposter syndrome.

This is very specifically connected to a lack of evidence that this is true. 

Let me explain: When you are experiencing this kind of imposter syndrome, it isn't because you're actually unqualified. In fact, all evidence likely points to your actual success, your actual abilities at this. So in this case, you are getting wonderful feedback from clients and customers. You have years of professional experience or education or certifications, that kind of thing, that proves that you are good at what you do. But even in the face of all of that evidence, even though you know logically that you are good at what you do, you still don't believe it in your soul or in your bones. dealing with imposter syndrome as a solopreneur

If this is you, you are not alone! I myself have struggled with this and a lot of my clients have struggled with this when they first come to me. And you know, in my case, this is kind of interesting — In my case, I have often, when I have felt impostor syndrome, I would often feel like, “Oh, I'm a nice person, I'm a personable kind of person, and therefore, maybe people are just trying to be nice to me. They're just being supportive. They're just telling me that they liked my work because they think that I'm a nice person and they want me to feel good.” 

This is the way that imposter syndrome has shown up for me. So the idea that, “Oh, people are trying to make me feel good and prop me up,” rather than because they genuinely get value from me. That is how my imposter syndrome has shown up for me. So it's very interesting, and it shows up in a lot of different ways for different types of people. And this is also really, really quite funny to me, because this is despite the fact that for many years, I've gotten rave reviews from my clients. It's the norm at this point for my clients to tell me that I've changed their lives. They talk about me in rooms that I'm not in that I find out after the fact. So it's very fascinating how these types of things just seep into everything! It can be extremely, extremely insidious. It's quite fascinating. 

So how do we deal with this? How do we work through this especially when it can, again, feel so frustrating when we know that we're good at what we do? All evidence shows that we are good at what we do. All evidence shows that the idea that we're an imposter is us just lying to ourselves. We can't seem to bridge that gap, right? We still feel like an imposter. It can be very frustrating. 

The first thing that we need to understand is what is actually happening here. Addressing this type of thing really matters because otherwise, we're going to get in our own way over and over and over. This might look like holding yourself back from doing a lot of marketing in your business. This might look like you not asking for feedback or testimonials from clients. This might look like you not wanting to be visible; not putting yourself out there. This might just look like not doing what you want to do in your business or in your personal life. 

Some of the reasons why this might happen are that we might feel like imposters because we have really high expectations for ourselves. We have very high standards that we want to live up to and oftentimes those standards are so high that they are impossible. They're humanly impossible for anyone to actually live up to. We might be high achievers, we might have fears of failure or fears of success to unpack. So what's going on here is that there's really this cognitive dissonance as we reconcile various perceptions and parts of ourselves. So even though again, we can see the evidence, we still have that feeling of being an imposter. So we want to kind of bridge that gap. 

When you understand what is happening with your own feelings of being an imposter, then you can explore the best solutions for it. This is not a one size fits all situation; as with pretty much everything in life and in business, there is no such thing as one size fits all. It really depends on your unique situation as to what strategies and mindset work will be best for processing all of this and unpacking it so that it really stops holding you back. 

Now I would recommend trying three things.

Here are 3 general things that you could try…

Number one is to put tangible evidence front and centre about your abilities.

This might look like taking screenshots of reviews and testimonials and really like great positive feedback that you've received from people and using that as your computer desktop background or somewhere where you can see it all the time. This might look like placing diplomas in your office so you can see that evidence of, “I have that training; I took those certifications, I completed them with flying colours.”

This might look like putting together a portfolio of your work into a tangible binder so you can see all of the work that you've done, or updating your resume with your full list of skills and qualifications. I would actually recommend doing that even if you don't intend to use it for job purposes, which you probably don't as a solopreneur. When we're solopreneurs we kind of tend to let our resume just fall by the wayside and not updated. But I would really recommend that as a solopreneur, you keep it updated just for your own personal ability to be able to see, “These are all the things that I can do. These are all the things that I have done, all the different types of projects I've worked on.” It's really hard to ignore the evidence when you see it tangibly in front of you. So that's the first thing I would say. 

Number two is to be very honest with yourself about the ways that impostor syndrome is holding you back.

This could look like listing out all the things that you want to be doing but you haven't done yet, specific instances when you have held yourself back, and the things that you would do if you didn't feel like an imposter. 

The purpose of this is not to feel bad about yourself! The purpose here is to really see how feeling like an imposter — not being an imposter, because feeling like an imposter and being an impostor are two very different things — this is when you see how feeling like an imposter is getting in your way. And this is also about looking at all of the different opportunities that are available to you. When you see how insidious it can really be and how it actually has affected you in a very real way over the course of your life or your business, that way you can then increase your awareness of when it's happening in the moment and you can begin to take those first steps towards disrupting it. 

And the third thing that I would recommend doing is to hire a professional to support you with this.

If you then realize that it is holding you back in a lot of ways, then getting external support can be really really helpful to help you see things in a new light to help you process and unpack all these different pieces. So this could be a business and success coach, this could be a mentor, maybe a therapist, maybe all three of these things, to really provide you with the support and guidance that you need to work through all of this. 

Again, it's gonna be very different depending on the person, depending on your unique situation and your unique needs; all of that. Find someone who you resonate with and who will be a good fit for helping you with your specific unique needs. 

And if you would like to work with me in a one to one coaching capacity, I would be happy to help you with this! We can unpack and process and work through all of these sneaky impostor feelings. You can book your spot inside the Solopreneur CEO coaching program at And I will post that link in the show notes below. 

Now, once again, I want to reiterate this is about feeling like an imposter not being an imposter. So if you have no qualifications in anything, and you were looking at starting a business, without having any skill and the service that you want to provide for people and that kind of thing, then you do want to start by building up your skill. If you feel like an impostor in that case, then it might be because you literally do not have the skills that you need. So this is a very important distinction to make. 

If you are feeling like an imposter or being an imposter, and again, if you don't know where you're at, then you might you might still benefit from hiring a professional to help you because that way we can sort of work through and identify, “here are the skills that you need to develop along the way. Here are the actual skill sets that you need to build.” And we can build those skill sets, those tangible hard skills, while we are also building up your confidence and unpacking impostor syndrome and anything like that. Because these things are two separate things, but they can both be happening at the same time. So there's a lot that can be going on here depending on the person!

All right. That is what I wanted to talk about today, about impostor syndrome and solopreneurship.

If you enjoyed this video, please subscribe to my solopreneur YouTube channel, give this video a thumbs up, and also drop a comment on YouTube sharing your favourite takeaway from today's video.

Don't forget to attend my free on-demand training, Anti-hustle Secrets to Solopreneur Success. It teaches you a whole lot more about how to fix your solopreneur problems so that you can skyrocket your success, PLUS you'll get a little sneak peek of Productivity Powerhouse while you're at it. Enjoy!