Impostor syndrome on musicians

Impostor syndrome on musicians
16th March 2022 sandra
Imposter syndrome on musicians

What is impostor syndrome?

  • Do you constantly feel like you’re not good enough?
  • Do you think that other musicians have better skills than you without putting so much effort?
  • Do you feel like your success is a matter of luck?

Imposter Syndrome is the feeling of being a fraud, not being good enough, and being “found out”. It is a false belief and a normal response to a stressful stimulus or “trigger”.

The risk that comes with dealing with impostor syndrome is that we can’t really enjoy our achievements to the point that we often sabotage ourselves or our projects when we start to make progress. We all know someone who is really talented but won’t release music and is making up excuses all the time. These excuses could be mistaken as excessive perfectionism but in reality, they hide a deep fear of failure. It’s better to fail because you didn’t put yourself out there than failing because no one listened to your music, right?

But in reality, you never know if they are gonna like it or not and If you’re an artist and want to make a living out of this you have to at least give it a try.

The first step is to recognize that you’re suffering from Impostor Syndrome and stop postponing the work that you need to do to overcome it. We often say “I will know that I’m a good musician when I have 10k followers on Tik Tok” but the truth is that these numbers or external factors can’t be the core of your self-worth. This leads us to the next point…

WORTH

Conditional worth happens when we base our worth on external factors. If we keep basing our worth on facts that we cannot control, our sense of self is unstable. We achieve unconditional worth when we are able to measure self-worth based on the person we are at our core as we are in control of what we do. Unconditional self-worth is distinct from our abilities and accomplishments. It’s not about comparing ourselves to others; it’s not something that we can have more or less of. It finally happens when we accept the fact that we deserve to be loved and happy.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • What would I do if I knew I am worth it?
  • What would I stop doing If I knew I was already worth it?

Here are four ways to start cultivating unconditional self-worth:

  1. Forgive yourself.  Many of us have problems accepting our past mistakes and that’s one of the reasons why we don’t feel worthy. We need to accept the fact that we can’t change the past and understand that we did the best we could at that moment.
  2. Practice self-acceptance. We often find ourselves trying to change to fit in a mold. We need to change the focus to the things we like about ourselves and if you really want to change something about yourself, you should try to make changes in a positive way, not with punishments.
  3. Comfort yourself. We often comfort other people when they are feeling low but what about ourselves? Next time that you find yourself having an emotional breakdown, try to help you like you would help your best friend.

LUCK

You need to stop underestimating your achievements by saying things like ” I was lucky” or ” I was in the right place at the right time”. It might be true but those events represent an opportunity. If you don’t take it, people won’t be calling you again. Luck is a series of coincidental circumstances that we can’t control. What we can control, in fact, is the response to these circumstances.

We also can make “luck” happen. It might not be 100% sure that if you release a single and promote through ads will make you successful, but there are greater possibilities than if you actually do nothing.

ACCEPT YOUR SUCCESS

Because if you don’t, you’re accepting less than your potential and undermining your future outcomes.

 

HOW DO WE STOP THIS VICIOUS CYCLE?

  1. Recognize your anxiety triggers – What happens right before you get anxious? Maybe do you feel frustrated? Does it happen when you see another musician that sounds better than you?
  2. Develop new behavioral habits – Maybe next time that you listen to another skilled musician you could think about something good about yourself. Change the pattern today or the loop will repeat tomorrow.
  3. Internalize new values – If you feel like you’re being too perfectionist, for example, try to focus on becoming a bit more careless.
  4. Practice meditation and stress relief – This should be a habit. We often feel really stressed and that keeps us on a flight response, which leads us to be more emotional and react with rage. Important: Seeking help and going to therapy will definitely help you to understand yourself and your emotions better.

We hope that this blog was useful for you. We all feel this way from time to time but the most important thing is to recognize the situation to be able to break the pattern and the most important thing: to be able to keep creating music without self-judgment.

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