The Spiritual Solution to Imposter Syndrome!

Updated: February 20, 2024

Do you ever get caught in the grips of Imposter Syndrome, right when something good happens?  Whether it’s achieving a dream goal, or starting a project you’ve always wanted to do, receiving a gift, or entering a room with people you admire?  

Recently something happened that made me think of all those times in the past (many, actually) where I fell prey to this. I like to call it the brain-sucking heart-stomping spell of that inner creature with the whiny voice that nattered away at my self-worth as soon as my eyes opened. 

 “See? You’re not good enough! You can’t do this! Who do you think you are anyway? You don’t deserve it! Quit now while you’re ahead!”

When I wrote my first book, Remembering the Future, in 2006 I literally popped a rib and had a full-blown panic attack listening to that awful voice and imagining that everyone could see I was a mistake and that my publisher, Hay House, should dump me ASAP!  

Thank goodness I had the wisdom of Hay House president Reid Tracy to whom I tearfully blubbered that I was afraid my ideas just were not original enough.  His response was reassuringly casual: “No one had any original ideas, just original ways of talking about similar things. Just be yourself! 

That actually helped. 

And then I experienced what I thought was my lucky day when Louise Hay herself thought I was worth a shot and told me so when she came to my seminar and sat in the audience. But, then that Imposter voice got busy and pretty loud, shouting instructions in my head. The saliva police were obviously listening, as my mouth went dry as a bone and my upper lip stuck to my front teeth in the middle of a sentence. Then I let out the most cringey nervous laugh and forgot what I was saying. Sigh.  

Still, my environment was more than supportive. I was the one who had to catch up.  

Which I did! Took a while but over time, I let go of approval seeking, hustling for my worth, and comparing myself to others. Eventually, that voice visited me less and less.  

So, when my students ask me “How did you free yourself from Imposter Syndrome?”  

Most people expect me to waft poetically on self-love and self-compassion. While that is true I will say for me it also needed to be peppered with some defiance and rebellion.  

Holy Cannoli, a spiritual teacher using those words! 

The reason I am sharing this now is because a couple of weeks ago my old record company released the rights to all my music back to me. Twenty years is a long time to wait. (After countless phone calls over the years that always ended the same – buy yourself out for $250K and you can have your music.)   

You heard the song I released last week. (It was a career and now a hobby, something creative I can share with the people who might like it.) 

Thank god my awesome music biz lawyer had the intuitive wherewithal to add a clause that gave my deal an expiry date! Seriously, the original deal read that the record label would own the master recordings for the entire universe in perpetuity! (not an exaggeration) Can you believe they were still going to own my music on Mars when I reincarnate!?!  

 So of course, the new wonderful situation (you can have them back now, no money necessary!)  brought back all the memories, good and awful, of the amazing man who gave me a shot and some of the great characters I met. But, everything was weirdly tainted by the attitudes of an industry that saw me as too old, too fat, too different, and a zillion other too much or not enoughs (too many to mention).  

So as you know I ended up in the most fringey weird wondrous profession (when I started, this was not mainstream at all!). I’ve happily settled into it, although there was a huge chip on my shoulder for quite a while.  

I won’t bore you with that story. Plus here I am now, definitely not the same person. And definitely grateful beyond measure the other career tanked.  

So yes self love and compassion are keys to the sanctuary of inner peace. Yet, for me, the gritty truth is every time the Imposter starts yapping in my head in recent times, I also have to take a minute and think about my early days and what I learned from the best spiritual teachers I ever had.  

It was 38 years ago. I’m sitting in a circle with other drug addicts and alcoholics, sharing our stories, many of us newcomers filled with deep remorse and self-loathing. A man shares his recovery time at 2 years and after losing everything, he’s now happy, has a job, a relationship that was healed, and he also shares all that he’d been through to get to that room and it was way worse than I could ever imagine.  

He talked about that Imposter voice that taunted him about his new life and why he didn’t deserve it. How every morning he had to defy that voice within him, and refuse the outside projections of others. That was the voice that could make him pick up a drink. For us to drink or to drug again was a death sentence. Would we ever choose this?  

In recovery, our community was our survival. We were taught that our inner lives had to be strong and disciplined, centered around God, not things. Our focus was on our common good, not our differences, and I have remembered that every day since.  

God does not make junk. It’s not even about resistance. That takes too much effort. It’s about defiantly refusing to be told you’re less than, unworthy in any way, a has-been, a never will be, a too much or too little of anything. Be yourself in all your “too whatever” glory! 

The spiritual solution to Imposter Syndrome is simple. Refuse that voice, inside you and outside you. Gather your people who love and support you, find your common ground, and ignore the ones who won’t see you.  

Every day, when you open your eyes make a promise to remember you were born worthy and you are enough.  

Don’t let anyone tell you differently, especially the Imposter in your head.  


Showing 29 comments
  • Ana

    Muchísimas gracias, lo tendré presente en mi día a día .

    Un gran abrazo

    • Jen

      Thanks for sharing your story. I’m dealing with trying to figure out who I want to be and what I’m supposed to be doing with my life and hormonal changes at 53 years old. Feeling disconnected spiritually for a while.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you Colette I really needed to hear that today! I really had bad luck the last four years first my son being killed then finding my brother dead my mother having a stroke at 81 surviving it losing my little pet that I had for 15 years, then moving and finding out this place was contaminated with bedbugs and cockroaches it run everything that I had! Everything I brought to the new place was brand new I don’t have money to replace stuff but I know there’s a purpose in all of it I just don’t understand it. Thank you again.

    • Colette Baron-Reid

      sending you a huge hug hang in there, we can’t always see the purpose in the moment, but later, hindsight offers us grace..

  • Liljana McDonald

    Well this article is in sync with where I am. I am finally getting out to do readings at a Mind Body Spirit Festival in Brisbane Qld Australia. I am getting out of my comfort zone of doing zoom readings and getting amongst my peers. My North node is in Leo which is also saying get out there. Telling my mind to keep quiet 🤫

    • Sandra Assink

      Imposter syndrome I had never heard of before but it was certainly what I needed to read today as I have struggled with this my whole life. I am 54 years old and I am still struggling with this day in day out. I seem to be unable to change no matter how hard I try. But reading your article Collette gives me hope that I will get through it and out the other side one day. Thankyou for sharing your stories and being so honest and open. I love being in the oracle membership. I have learnt so much already in the short time I have been in it. I am so grateful to have found your membership and Thankyou Thankyou Thankyou 💜💜💜💜

  • Cindy

    Awesome and just what I needed today! Thank you

  • Empress Ori Luna

    I truly needed this today. That imposter tried to hold me to my past and make me feel Sorry for myself when in fact I survived a horrible betrayal that shook my life . Yet and still I fight the negative thoughts I refuse to be held to my past , my past mistakes or an old version of me. I prayed meditated and talked to my shadow self about what we will and will not engage in . Thanks for always sharing you truth you are truly a blessing may you continue to be blessed .🙏🏽✨

  • Idaliz Romero

    WOW, thank you so much, I needed to read this today. As a beginning writer I am terrified of the imposter syndrome but I also fear what others may think of my writing (mainly my family). This gave me some perspective. Thank you again!

  • Anonymous

    Thank you so much for sharing this article! It was just what I needed to read and feel today. You are such a help mate to us all and your words are wonderful reminders of the light each of us shares with the world no matter what it appears to be at the time. Thank you so much Colette! May you be blessed with the love, kindness, and grace you share so willingly with us all. And Congratulations on your music returning to its rightful owner 🙂

  • Lucy Cantu

    Thank you Colette for this inspiring post, for being YOU, and for being one of my all-time favorite Spiritual Teachers. You are such a gift! Sending you so much gratitude from my heart.

  • Lilijana

    Thank you, Colette. Really beautiful.

  • Greg MacIntyre

    Colette I’m clean and sober since 1976 & that imposter record still comes up. I choose to euthanize my dog who was 11 but suffering but I doubted my own inner guidance and felt guilty after! I really loved her so much! Thanks 🙏 for sharing your story and I’m so happy for you getting your music back! I’m sure blessed to be alive and sober!

  • Anonymous

    Thanks, Colette. A great reminder for daily use.

  • Deb

    Thank you Colette always your words of wisdom touch me because they are real, you have walked the rough roads but had the kindness of your spirit to leave a map and encouragement. Big hugs lady and thanks a bunch!

  • Diane in SC

    Well written Colette. When you share the intimate events in your life we can compare to what is going on in our lives. We all have stories – are we walking books? I have read a lot of stories during my 87 years on this beautiful planet.
    They have helped me grow into the woman I am today – yes, I love myself and by doing so I tend to send love to others I meet. Thank you for entering my life years ago ~ you have enhanced it and I love that you are you!…….Diane in SC.

  • Tracy

    Colette, thank you so much for being vulnerable and sharing your story. God does not make junk!

  • Denice

    Thank you, needed to hear this ♥️

  • Renee Sugar

    ” If we did all the things we are capable of doing,
    it would literally astound us. ” Thomas A. Edison

    Your story struck many resonant chords Colette.
    Listening to you, and witnessing how you have
    evolved over the years and the impact that your work has had on the lives of thousands of people,
    it is clear that you ” knew ” the way to proceed,
    and have demonstrated this in countless ways.
    I had a life-transforming experience when I
    decided to participate in an interior design trade
    show to launch a collection of artisanal prints
    which humbly began in the kitchen. Never had
    done this kind of work/process before I discovered
    a kit which I purchased for $ 7.95.
    After hundreds of specimens/experiments I
    had an epidemic of artwork !! What to do with
    all of this raw material? I had applied to an entrepreneurial business development course,
    twice, first time not accepted. I had been laid
    off after 11 1/2 years in ssles with a home fashions
    manufacturer. The second application was accepted,
    and ten months later I completed a foundational
    business plan. Then an e-mail arrived looking for people to exhibit at this design trade show. I felt
    it was an opportunity for exposure. Some naysayers, including the business advisor, thought I was jumping into the deep end too quickly! I did not agree, and proceeded to network to find a partner to share
    the booth to reduce the expenses by half. One was provided through an art college. He even came with a drill! Before the show date I had twisted my pelvis while bending down to pick up the course manual.
    I could barely walk a few feet without pain shooting up/down my leg. How was I going to do this? It was expensive to participate, and there would be over 50,000 visitors over four days. I truly do not know How? I managed. Might have been a blessing that I injured my back as I could not run. I faced the assignment, met and spoke to many designers, and then one day a freelance journalist from a major newspaper came into the booth. She asked many questions, and took photos. I asked if there would be an article? “Uh maybe, she replied.”
    I had never attempted to launch a collection of original designs before. I had not had the experience of media attention/professionals meet me and view the work. I didn’t know what I was capable of doing.
    A totally “uncharted ” adventure which opened many doors, including being one of five designers who were featured in an article, “At the Interior Design Show, creative pursuits lead to reinvented careers.”
    After the show, I was invited to exhibit the collection at a very upscale complex of interior design showrooms. I don’t think I was an imposter,
    but I had no prior reference to these experiences.
    I was honoured, and humble as an emerging
    designer who stepped out of the kitchen into
    the limelight. It was a very proud accomplishment
    to celebrate the work and to receive support
    from other industry professionaIs I was meeting.
    Saying YES was the invitation to all of the above.
    So grateful I had the courage to rise to meet the challenge.
    ” If we knew everything beforehand, it would be
    called dictation, NOT creation. Gertrude Stein

  • Awilda

    Love this and SOOOOO needed this today. I stepped into my light & truth and have vowed to be myself because that’s enough!!
    Hugs and Love ❤️

    Awilda Luz Olah

  • Sandra

    Thank you so much for sharing and posting this. It has got me reflecting on my experience of Imposter Syndrome. First and foremost, it’s a bully – and it requires fortitude to deal with a bully. I’ve had to deal with them and I wasn’t very good at it. I tended to avoid confrontation. Experience has taught me that the inner bully is much more dangerous and much more subversive, and talking to it nicely won’t get it to stop. There needs to be firm pushback that comes from no less but the soul itself, the higher authority of one’s Being and our centre of gravity. We need to know who we are to defeat Imposter Syndrome and all its cronies. That’s not the whiny repetitive critic in your ear, the shouty one trick pony that doesn’t have anything new to say. It’s the quiet whisper and persistent nudge that comes from stillness deep inside and says “Do it.”

    • Colette Baron-Reid

      love that – the inner bully is very sneaky and very dangerous. for me its the addict voice, causes the most damage but seems almost innocent in the moment. thanx for writing

  • Jeanne Dunn

    I am currently fighting hard against the raging tide of self-doubt and imposter syndrome. I have scheduled my first crystal workshop for Feb. 29, and I have committed to a “featured reader” gig at a beautiful local shop every 3rd Saturday. You have no idea how much my soul needed your sharing today. Thank you! I am a tiny bit less terrified. 💕

  • Anonymous

    Thank you, Colette. This issue keeps so many girls and women from bringing their talents and gifts fully into the world. May we all be willing to ask ourselves, “What future is out there when I imagine myself having done that thing I yearn to do?”

  • Carolyn

    Thank you 🙏 so much for sharing your experience. Your open-hearted vulnerability lifts us all. I recently gave my imposter a name so we could explore her origin story. Understanding why I invited her into my life helps us come to terms with each other. I’ve noticed that she is quiet in the morning but vocal at night. Wonder if others have noticed a pattern to when their imposter is more active ♥️

  • mary

    I have been struggling with this for a very long time now .Slowly working on it (patience is my ahchiles heel) and trying to be patient..Your message has come at the perfet time for me and has helped me feel not so alone .I am presently putting a group series on grief and that voice has amped up so I am doing lots of talking to myself these days …”I can don this and those attending will have the tools they need .I co-create with spirit every day in every day thank you!”

  • Helen

    Well done, Colette. So very happy for you. You are one special person and I’m so happy to be a member of your Oracle School and now of the Oracle School. Thank you for sharing your story, for always being your authentic self and for all that you do for us. Stay blessed. xoxo

  • Brenda Randall

    What an awesome blog, so insightful things we all feel at some point, sometimes all the time sometimes on and off
    Thank you for sharing
    My health has held me back a lot, but my will has not
    I may not have got to my potential, I may never will fully, however I’m happy
    Bless you and your kindness to others

  • Samantha

    Hi, I am grateful that I came upon this post at this time. I can relate 120% and feel like I am digging myself out of the imposter pit yet the walls keep collapsing. I have many of your decks, used them often and still do for myself. I am dedicated to moving forward. I have work to do, a lot of work. But I will!
    Thank you for sharing from your heart!

Leave a Comment

Want more spiritual news and Oracle Card readings delivered to your inbox each week?


Start typing and press Enter to search