Typically, doctoral students enter their program already possessing the aptitude to excel. But too many students don’t even recognize the skills they have.
Instead, they choose to focus on their deficiencies (real or imaginary) and they let those thoughts dictate how they see themselves as a student and predict how well they will do in their program.
And those thoughts become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Students who believe they will rock their doctoral program, generally do. Students who believe they will struggle through their doctoral program, always do!
I was one of those students who didn’t give myself enough credit from the outset.
Early in my program, I focused on my weaknesses and disregarded my strengths.
That thought pattern eroded my self-confidence and kept me spinning in overwhelm. I was constantly preoccupied with my studies and eventually, that affected my personal and work relationships.
Well after the fact, I learned that my self-doubt was rooted in imposter syndrome.
The path to overcome
When I unknowingly started addressing the imposter syndrome through general life self-coaching, my program, and my outlook on life improved.
A primary symptom of imposter syndrome is not having a realistic idea of your talents.
I put together a self-assessment tool for doctoral students so they can evaluate their habits, skills, and strengths.
This tool is meant to provide the student with an objective view of their capability to perform in a doctoral program.
Most students will find this assessment tool highlights more strengths than they realized they had in their arsenal.
Finding deficiencies creates the opportunity for students to be proactive to address concerns instead of passively letting those areas damage their self-confidence.
The self-assessment tool is available in the private Facebook group, Overcome Any Obstacle (OAO): emotional support group for EdD/PhD students.
Join us in the group!