Over Reading Week I attended an Academic Success workshop on Imposter Syndrome titled “Learning from Failure and Challenge”. This is one of a group of workshops in U of T Student Life’s “Learning How to Learn” series.
These Academic Success workshops are open to all students and are meant to help with the struggles that U of T students experience over the school year. These workshops address issues such as stress, procrastination, failure, and habits for staying healthy and happy.
Each workshop begins with a One Good Minute exercise which is meant to help us think compassionately about ourselves. The session I attended took three minutes for this exercise and it felt like a little meditation.
In the session on imposter syndrome and learning from failure the hosts identified what causes imposter syndrome and how it can be dealt with.
The notes I took:
Defining Imposter Syndrome/Phenomenon
- Feelings that arise as a reaction to a (new) learning environment
- Common in academia
- Sense of not belonging and difficulty internalizing accomplishments
- Inability to share fears with others
- Negative self talk = stops ability to learn successfully
- It is a short term experience
To learn more about how students experience imposter syndrome check out this Varsity article on it.
(Some) Strategies to Deal with Imposter Syndrome
- I can learn anything [rather than: I’m either good or bad at it.]
- When I fail, I learn [rather than: When I fail, I’m no good.]
- If you succeed, I’m inspired [rather than: If you succeed, I feel threatened.]
- Always add the word ‘yet’: I’m not comfortable speaking in class, yet.
- Ask yourself: will this matter in 5 days? 5 months? 5 years?
I have always found that Academic Success workshops help me get back on track with my studies; they help me see the bigger picture. Much of the time I tell myself I am already aware of the strategies provided in the session, but the truth is I won’t incorporate those strategies into my life unless I am continuously reminded of them. Which is why attending Academic Success workshops help with maintaining a healthy mindset toward school.