Keep an evidence list on your phone or on a list somewhere tangible to refer to often. Far too often we are not giving ourselves enough credit. Write down all your wins, small and big, and start using them to create more evidence of the badass that you are and what you’re capable of doing!
As a part of our series about how very accomplished leaders were able to succeed despite experiencing Imposter Syndrome, I had the pleasure of interviewing Carrie Veatch.
Carrie helps ambitious female entrepreneurs bust through self-doubt and fear to create wildly profitable online businesses. Carrie combines neuroscience, teaching clients to rewire their brains through mindset work, and a safe container for clients to create lives of freedom. She hosts the innovative, community based podcast: Set Yourself Free which shows the behind the scenes of what it takes to be profitable online and you can find on iTunes, Spotify, and Stitcher. Find out more about her at setyourselffreellc.com
Thank you so much for joining us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’?
Absolutely! I’m a nomad living and traveling abroad (currently in Vietnam), morning routine enthusiast, CrossFitter, scooter loving, coffee addicted, community minded, gluten free foodie that is obsessed with helping others create lives of freedom.
With my MA in counseling psychology, I have been a therapist, worked in gang prevention and victim services, and was the Executive Director of a highly successful education based nonprofit.
I lived for so many years unable to truly set myself free. Living in vicious cycles of victimhood, self-sabotage, and self-doubt, I kept myself in a prison of my own making. I doubted the light I had within myself by constantly giving away my power.
Once I healed my gut (I have celiac disease aka I cannot digest gluten) and learned to tap into the power of my mind, I learned how to unlock the magic within myself. I’m fully convinced we all have limitless potential within ourselves with the right tools and support.
I love working with clients all over the world and teaching them how to rewire and manage their brains. No one teaches us how to master our minds and it is something I am most passionate about if you want to get out of self-sabotaging behaviors and into your power.
Can you share with us the most interesting story from your career? Can you tell us what lessons or ‘take aways’ you learned from that?
Sure thing. In 2016, I quit my job as Executive Director of a successful nonprofit. I quite literally could have stayed there forever if I wanted to. I had built great relationships, we had turned the organization around, and things were going extremely well. However, my soul was calling for me to live my life of freedom. I couldn’t spend one more day talking about rocks (it was an association for geologists and a geologist I am not!)
I handed in my resignation to my board of directors and I remember so specifically saying to a board member who asked where I was going “I don’t have a plan but I have a plane ticket.” And he nearly had me in tears because he said, “Carrie, I know you and that is a plan and you will figure it out.”
And I did and I have continued to figure it out. And what that moment reinforced for me was that self-trust is the most important life skill we can cultivate. We as humans are far more adaptable and capable than we give ourselves credit for.
What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?
I care tremendously amount anyone in my world and know I have the gift of coaching others. If clients pay me to change their lives, I take it seriously and am committed to helping them get out of their way and into their own unique magic. Because the truth is all of us already have everything we need deep inside of us, but sometimes it’s hard to see when we aren’t seeing the results we want in our lives and businesses.
Here is what one client had to say about our work together: “After working with Carrie for just a month, I quadrupled my monthly income. I brought in more clients in 7 days than I have in the previous 6 months. This was all thanks to the conversations I had with Carrie over a period of only 4 weeks. This was the most transformative thing I have ever done for my business. I have tried so many coaching programs and business courses but nothing has helped me make these massive shifts like this coaching. I never thought I could reach this level of success by simply working on my mindset.”
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?
I could not agree more, which is personally why I have never resonated with the terms “self-made.” There are honestly too many people to count who have helped me to get to where I am today.
However, I’ll share a story of one particular person, who has had a tremendous impact on my journey and now is a dear friend in my life (my old boss). We ended up working together for well over six years and eventually even traded roles once I took over her job as Executive Director of a second nonprofit she hired me at, and then I hired her to work for me!
She was going in for surgery and we had a bit of an awkward meeting from my perspective. So afterwards, I knew I wouldn’t see her again until after her surgery so I sent her a text message to wish her well. She had an Android phone and since the text was a long one it broke the text into two text messages and split it directly at “f you on Tuesday” — which was delivered first. The real message was a long one with “thinking of you on Tuesday” at the end.
She saved the text for years and we laughed about the “f you on Tuesday,” since of course this was completely out of character for me to send.
We have one of the most unique relationships around and I think both of us gush about how much we each have learned from one another. I couldn’t be more grateful for her in my life and how much she believed in me back then to be the leader I was meant to be, and how she continues to cheer me on from afar whatever endeavors I am up to. She is an angel that was placed in my life a decade ago and continues to remind me that I’m capable of anything I set my mind to.
Ok thank you for all that. Now let’s shift to the main focus of this interview. We would like to explore and flesh out the experience of Impostor Syndrome. How would you define Impostor Syndrome? What do people with Imposter Syndrome feel?
Simply put, I would define imposter syndrome as a feeling of “not good enough” and/or that others will expose you as a “fraud.”
People with imposter syndrome feel inadequate, are consumed by self-doubt, and also are often in comparison mode. It’s so easy for all of us to get wrapped up in feeling like a fraud in this digital age, when all we are seeing is the highlight reel on places like social media.
What are the downsides of Impostor Syndrome? How can it limit people?
Impostor Syndrome can show up in so many different ways, but typically is some version of “not good enough” or that other will expose you as a failure. It can limit people tremendously because they are looking to be perfect and having something to prove, versus showing up to do the best they can and help others from their own lived experience.
Particularly in this age of curated feeds and what often times feels like impossible standards for others to “measure up” to, now more than ever people are wanting relatable humans online. People want to know that it’s ok to try your best and not get everything perfect every time. Each time we are allowing imposter syndrome to take over, it is quite literally denying others of the ability to see how we can help them.
How can the experience of Impostor Syndrome impact how one treats others?
When imposter syndrome rears its ugly head, it makes us shrink. It says to us that we aren’t capable, we aren’t worthy, we aren’t good enough. I find that when females are operating in imposter syndrome, they are lessening their greatness, afraid to take up space in this world, and often withdrawing and engaging in negative self-talk. Because of this, others often treat them like they don’t belong, which reinforces the self-fulfilling prophesy of feeling not good enough.
We would love to hear your story about your experience with Impostor Syndrome. Would you be able to share that with us?
My first experience that I remember with imposter syndrome was back when I was in graduate school and was promoted almost instantly to a supervisor role at my job. I had all of the thoughts and feeling come up around “who I am to be promoted?” type thinking to wonder why I was picked over others. I was brand new and there were many people that were much older, much more experienced than I was, so all of the voices of insecurity surfaced.
Did you ever shake the feeling off? If yes, what have you done to mitigate it or eliminate it?
In this situation when I was promoted and every time imposter syndrome rears its ugly head (because I find it often does when I’m doing something new), I remind myself of what I’m really great at and step into my confidence over my self-doubt.
Years later now after getting my Masters in Counseling and working in so many helping professions, I am obsessed with coaching clients and helping others to understand how to better utilize their brains. We believe our brains and anytime it tells us that we aren’t qualified, aren’t good enough, etc. we think of it as fact. Yet in reality, we have the ability and power to question our thoughts and rewire our brains for the success that we desire. Learning how to create self-confidence is one of the most important life skills and something I’m super passionate about so that more females can overcome imposter syndrome and have true lives of freedom.
In your opinion, what are 5 steps that someone who is experiencing Impostor Syndrome can take to move forward despite feeling like an “Impostor”? Please share a story or an example for each.
1. Evidence list — keep an evidence list on your phone or on a list somewhere tangible to refer to often. Far too often we are not giving ourselves enough credit. Write down all your wins, small and big, and start using them to create more evidence of the badass that you are and what you’re capable of doing!
2. Gratitude — I fully believe that what we focus on expands. And when we are grateful and focused on the good things happening, we create more of it. Just like the evidence list, gratitude lists are super helpful to create and refer back to often.
3. Get curious about your thoughts — one of the things I wish that I would have learned earlier on in life is that our thoughts do not have to be facts. This is something I am so passionate about teaching others now because our brains come up with all kinds of silly thoughts and left to their own devices, they will take us down unhelpful pathways. I always remind my clients to get curious about their thoughts. A simple question that you can ask is: “Is this thought serving my future goals?” and if not, do the work to choose more empowering thoughts instead.
4. Get support — as we talked about, none of us do this life alone! It is essential that we ask for help when we are struggling or spinning in our self-doubt and sometimes all you need is a friend or mentor to reflect back to you some of your greatness to step out of those imposter feelings!
5. Go help someone — I’m a huge fan of being in service in this world and I know that when we help someone else out, a natural byproduct of it is that we also feel better in the process. Getting out of your own head and serving someone else is a huge way to lessen the charge of feeling like an imposter. Try it on!
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the greatest amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
I want to inspire women to know that they are far more capable than they ever imagined and that rewiring our brains is some of the most important work we can possibly do. Our thoughts create our feelings, not the other way around and once we understand this — we truly start paying attention to the thoughts we are thinking between our ears, since research says we have about 60,000 thoughts per day!
We are blessed that some very prominent leaders read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US, with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them 🙂
Sara Blakely is by far my favorite female entrepreneur. I resonate deeply with the mission of being here on this planet to empower women.
Sara and her husband Jesse’s annual Hell on the Hill charity event are truly #lifegoals for me of how I deeply desire to make an impact on this world. This is the type of charity event I absolutely want to run in the future and give back similarly to how they do. Both Sara and Jesse have incredible mindsets and attribute so much of their success to it. I would love to sit down and have a private meal with Sara or Jesse and talk about billionaire mindset mentality.
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And check out the Set Yourself Free Podcast for a unique collective experience for stories, inspiration, and tips to create the wildly profitable online business you desire. Click for iTunes, Spotify, and Stitcher.
This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for joining us!