Gaining Clarity When You're Consistently Feeling Like An Impostor

alignment clarity fulfillment impostor syndrome purpose success Mar 05, 2024
With Clarity & Purpose | Gaining Clarity


Nobody is perfect because humans will always make mistakes, but why are we hard on ourselves? Why do we still pivot into holding ourselves back or consistently self-doubt? In this episode, Yanet Borrego talks about impostor syndrome and gaining clarity when consistently feeling like an impostor. She warns everyone not to wait to reach rock bottom and instead pay attention and take action immediately. Yanet explains why you should not wait for a crisis and start creating a life with fulfillment and success. Life on earth is temporary; don’t let it waste away with impostor syndrome. Gain clarity in this episode with Yanet today.

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Gaining Clarity When You're Consistently Feeling Like An Impostor

In this episode, we are going to talk about how you can gain clarity when you are consistently feeling like an imposter. In the last episode, we also discuss the topic of impostor syndrome when it's totally normal and natural to feel like an imposter. When we talk about the impostor syndrome, which is this feeling and thought that we are not capable, that we don't fit in, that we are not enough, there are two situations or cases here. 1) When you feel like an imposter every now and then, not always in certain situations and the last episode was all about that. The second case is when never consistently feels like an impostor.

I'm excited to talk about this topic because I've definitely been there. The first time I felt like an impostor consistently was when I first started working my full-time corporate job. I had gone to school to study Chemical Engineering. I did a lot of internships. I finished with a high GPA and I got an amazing offer in this international, very prestigious oil and gas company. When I started working there as a chemical engineer, I started working on capital projects and then process engineering, which was a lot more intense.

A few months into this role, position and company, I felt that wherever I was and whatever I was doing, it was not aligning with myself. There was something missing. I always say like in college, I followed the success checklist, high GPA, extracurricular activities, plenty of internships and I got the offer. That's awesome. I followed the checklist of what everyone thought success was about. When I got to that outcome, I realized that that wasn't a success for me.

I realized that even though I had all of these financial abundance being like 23 years old, I was deeply unfulfilled. I truly lacked meaning. That's exactly when I started getting obsessed, about this intersection between success and fulfillment. Why do I call it this intersection? I've seen this in my coaching clients. Sometimes we feel that we have to sacrifice our happiness, mental health and wellbeing to achieve financial success, but you can have both.

You can have fulfillment, mental health, well-being, a meaningful career, a meaningful life, and you can have the financial success that you are seeking. I'm telling you this because many times we think that we cannot have it all. We cannot have both things and we need to sacrifice one thing for the other. I've seen it plenty of times that it's possible. The data is out there if we look for it.

Impostor Syndrome

I started getting obsessed with basically understanding myself. Why was I in this position that I had truly desired for the last few years of my life? I was still there. I had achieved to the outcome and the perceived dream, and I still felt empty within myself. I called impostor syndrome the self-discovering syndrome because me consistently feeling like an impostor led me to the biggest awakening that I've had in my life so far. Literally, feeling like an imposter most days led me to understand myself to a level where I go to discover my purpose, where I go to start aligning my career to what I truly believed in and I truly felt fulfilled for.

Chemical engineering wasn't it? I was totally fine whenever I grieved the person that I thought I was going to be, whenever I allowed myself to grieve the identity of this engineer, of this person who was perceived by society, as having an amazing position, studies and career as the ego talking. For the first time, I started leading with my heart. For the first time, I started choosing, and making my decisions based on love and not based on fear. It was a process to get there.

After I started feeling like an impostor and like I didn't fit in and I couldn't understand why, I kept tolerating that pain every single day. I was working so much. I was delivering much in my work and career. I was working 12-hour shifts from 6:00 PM to 6:00 AM during turnarounds, which is when the refinery shut down the units. I was doing many things that felt out of alignment with myself. I kept tolerating that and tolerating that. I know that inner voice within me kept telling me, “You are misaligned. You need to go inward, you need to do something about it.”

I was in such survival mode that I kept going. That voice kept getting louder and louder until I had a panic attack, my first and only panic attack ever. I thought I was dying because my left arm felt completely numb. I had this immense pressure in my chest. I went to emergency, everything was fine. Unfortunately, that time I waited until I touched rock bottom to awaken from this dream. That wasn't my dream. It was a dream that I was given. It was a dream fulfilled by external validation instead of internal fulfillment. When I awaken from this dream driven by ego, to be honest with you, I gather the courage to start making aligned decisions.

The biggest lesson that I learned in this process that I've mentioned it over and over, but it's worth mentioning it again because this is something that I apply on a daily basis, and it's something that I coach my clients on so much, “Do not wait until crisis hits ever again. Do not wait until you touch rock bottom again to make a decision that you know is scary, but it's aligned with you because it's a matter of when your body and health is going to stop tolerating that pain that you are in. The pain of not changing will become greater than the pain of changing for yourself.”

If this episode resonates with you, I invite you to work with me in my private one-on-one coaching. One-on-one Coaching is a six-month container where I help you go from playing small, not believing in yourself and struggling with the impostor syndrome, inconsistency and indecisiveness to having the clarity, confidence, and courage to follow through with your dreams. When you work with me as a private client, the first thing we do is I guide you through an in-depth breakthrough session where we get very clear on all of the blind spots that have been preventing you from achieving your goals. We become aware of those and we release them at the subconscious level with proven techniques.

I provide you with accountability. I'm like a GPS for you to find the resources and answers that are already within you because you, my friend, are powerful. One of my coaching clients said, “Through working with Yanet, I've been able to radically shift my mindset in a way I never thought was possible. Each day, I wake up feeling excited about my future and believing in my potential.” If you're ready to believe in your potential, take action and see progress with all of your dreams and goals, you have been delaying. This is your time. I cannot wait to meet you. See you soon.

Unfortunately, that's the time when we decide to take action, but we don't have to wait until we know better. If you are reading this episode, I'm sure you have run this pattern of maybe it was in a romantic relationship, maybe it was in your career, maybe it was related to your mental health, to your physical health, this pattern of waiting for the pain to pass, waiting for things to get better then all of those things keep accumulating within yourself until you erupt literally like a volcano. Remember that the whole purpose of your subconscious mind is to keep you safe. In order for your subconscious to keep you safe, sometimes your mind is going to start suppressing emotions and things that you're experiencing.

There is a tolerance to that. There is a moment when that's going to bubble up to a surface, and then you need to deal with it. I always say, “If you don't face it, you suppress it.” These are some things that we have to truly pay attention to them and take action on it. After going through all of the discovery process and awakening from this dream driven by ego and what others thought, success was about, I started digging deeper within myself. I found that the meaning that I was truly seeking was one where I could help transform people's lives. One where I could help people find their own light.

It’s the same thing that was happening to me. They could live more meaningful and purpose-driven lives. I'm all about taking action. This is why it is important for you to take action and gain clarity when you are consistently feeling like an imposter because there is an end to it. You have to take action right now.

You have to gather that courage because you don't want to wait until you hit a crisis to make a decision that is already aligned. I've repeated this many times, but it's worth repeating because life can get complicated.

We can enter into survival mode and stop creating the life we deserve and dream of. Many times in our lives, we are living someone else's dreams, not our dreams. This is a call to action for you to start digging deeper into what's your purpose and what you are dreaming of, and start creating that life that you truly deserve. That's exactly what I did during that panic attack in 2014. Up until now, I kept searching for my purpose, discovering my purpose, and aligning my career to what truly fulfilled me and fired me up.

Gain Clarity

Back in 2021, which was coaching and speaking, I quit my full-time corporate career. I went all in on full-time coaching and speaking. That's one of the best decisions I've ever done. Maybe your path is not to be a coach or a speaker, but it doesn't matter what it is. The whole purpose for this is to gain clarity, start discovering yourself and date yourself at the deepest end so you can start creating a life that you are proud of.

I want to take you through this exercise that I've done myself. I coach my clients on it because it allows them to gain much clarity on why they are feeling unfulfilled. This applies in your career, business, romantic relationships, mental health, physical health and all of it because the concepts are the same. Lack of meaning, lack of fulfillment, feeling that you don't belong, feeling like you're an impostor. We talk about it a lot in the context of careers, but I've had relationships where I've felt like an impostor. I've felt like I'm not enough. I've felt like I don't fit in. I've been in situations where mentally and emotionally I feel the same.

This concept of the imposter syndrome can apply to many contexts. This concept also that I'm going to show you, this amazing actionable exercise can apply to anything in your life, and I'm going to show you how. Let's take a career as an example because the example that I gave you initially for myself was around career. I was telling you that I started chemical engineering and then I discovered that wasn't it for me, but I wasn't sure what was it.

I wasn't sure why I didn't feel fulfilled. The first thing that I would recommend you to do is in that area of life, for example, career, I want you to ask yourself a simple question. This is a simple but powerful exercise. I want you to ask yourself, “What is important to me in the area of career?” You can do the same with romantic relationships, mental health, physical health and anything else. What is important to you in the area of career? I want you to list everything that comes to mind.

It's usually 1 to 2 words. For example, for me back then and still now, honestly, fulfillment was super important. I wanted to make sure that whatever I was doing, it had purpose and meaning. Authenticity was super important. I wanted to make sure that who I was as a person at the deepest level shined through anywhere I went career-wise and romantic relationships-wise. Authenticity for me is key. Integrity for me is super important in anything I do. In this case, we are talking about career.

For example, fulfillment, authenticity, and integrity are three values in careers for me. When I'm asking you to ask this question of what is important to you in the area of your career, basically we are eliciting your values. Your values are the deepest level of your subconscious programming. It describes why you are making certain decisions and why you are not feeling fulfilled. They are that important.

I know my values from top to end, and I use them as a decision-making framework. I use my values also to troubleshoot. Whenever I'm not feeling happy or fulfilled, I look at my values and ask myself,  “What is missing here? Let's troubleshoot and make sure I understand that.” I go inward because when many times we feel like an imposter, we have this natural reaction of pointing outside of us, “It's the boss. It's the environment.” Sometimes these things play a role, but I want you to point towards yourself because the first step in this process is to recognize that your power lies within. You can influence yourself instead of your environment influencing you. It's a lifelong practice.

This is not a perfect journey by any means, but it's an important one to start. Whenever you're feeling unfulfilled, point towards yourself and ask yourself, “What is important to me in this area of life that I'm struggling in?” I want you to list those things whatever comes to mind. After you list those things, what I do usually with my coaching clients, and I do this before the breakthrough session, where we release all of their limiting beliefs or all of their baggage. I also do that after the breakthrough session, after they have released all of their baggage to see how they have changed at the subconscious level.

I get a big wow from my clients because they cannot believe the transformation that has happened in a few hours because all of this is subconscious. I'm going to make it simple for you so you can apply this concept right away as soon as possible. List all of these values. Prioritize them to understand what's the most important to you. Now, the most important to me is purpose in the area of career, which is the same thing of fulfillment to me. Feeling that there is a purpose behind what I'm doing, feeling that my bigger why has meaning and fulfillment. Once you have this list of values, in this case, career values, I want you to describe them.

I want you to ask yourself for each one of them, the top five mainly. If you have 10 or 20, choose the top 5 in order of priority and trust the first thing that comes to mind. Do not start changing the order after the first time. Trust the first thing, because even this process is subconscious, you got to go with the first thing that comes to mind. List the values, prioritize them, and the first five are going to be the most important ones. For the first five, I want you to answer three questions.


You should go with the first thing that comes to mind.


Find Your Purpose

1) “What does that value mean to you?” For example, what does purpose mean to me in the area of career? Purpose for me means to be fulfilled in my business and my career to understand the bigger why other than wanting to achieve this. The purpose for me means to serve other people for the reason that I'm doing whatever I'm doing to be greater than me. That's what purpose means to me. You can write 1 to 3 sentences. Make it simple. The first thing that comes to mind.

The second question I want you to ask per value is, “Why is this value important to me in the area of career? Why is purpose important to me in the area of career?” I want to wake up excited every single day. I want to know that I have an inner driver that is driving me even during challenging times. I want to know that I have a direction in this life. I want to know that I'm living for something bigger than myself. That's why it's important. That's the second question.

The third question is, “How do you know when you have gotten that value in your career?” For me was when I believed in what I'm doing. When I was working as a process engineer, I was applying what I learned in school and doing things, but I didn't believe in what I was doing. I wasn't excited about what I was doing. It wasn't meaningful. Now that I have my business, I'm helping people to achieve their wildest dream and master their mindset. That gets me excited because it's also a path that I've walked and still walking. I'm going to walk it until my last day on this Earth. That is super important. How do you know when you have gotten this value? For me, that purpose was also to make what I was doing, human-centric. I wanted to serve people. I wanted to help people develop. That's how I knew I was going to get that value in that case.

I want you to ask this last question. This is super important because as you continue gaining clarity on yourself and taking action, you are going to look at that question and you're going to validate that you are now feeling that value. That value now is being met. It's a beautiful troubleshooting process and a decision-making framework because whenever you seek a new career, position, business and anything, I want you to look at your values and make sure that whatever you're choosing meets your top five values. That's super important, to make sure that you're fulfilled, happy and it feels authentic to you.

Connect Back Your Authenticity

Many times the impostor syndrome means that you're driving away from your authenticity, and you need to reconnect again with who you are. It has nothing to do with the outside. You can change the outside as a second step, but the first step is to connect back to your authenticity. Through this simple exercise that I'm teaching you right now in this episode, for you to start making those decisions are more aligned with who you are and are aligned and in integrity with yourself. Once you do that, you are not going to be feeling consistently like an impostor anymore. You are going to be feeling that you belong because belonging starts from within.

The environment can help. Your boss can help. That makes a huge difference. Whenever you belong, whenever you're connected to yourself, trust me, there is nothing outside of you that can disconnect you because you are standing in your power and you are being in control of yourself. No one has much power over yourself, only you. I want you to empower yourself by reading this message. You have your values listed. You have prioritized your top five. You have asked yourself these three questions, “What is this value in the area of career? What does this mean to me? Why is this value important? How do I know when I've gotten or met this value?”


When I was working as a chemical engineer, I did a similar process. Back then, I didn't have this framework that you have now and that I used with my coaching clients, but I remember gaining so much clarity on, “I want to make sure that I'm fulfilled the financial success. I have it. I want to make sure that I'm fulfilled. I want to make sure that what I'm doing feels authentic and that I believe in what I get to do every single day.”

What I did back then, when I was in a corporate job, I knew that what I was doing as a process engineer wasn't interesting to me, to be honest with you. It wasn't something that I believed in. I knew I needed to align. I knew I needed to seek something else that added to my skills and value that I wanted to give later on in life, which was coaching and speaking and process engineering, wasn't it? I decided to stay in this company because it was a big company and I had the opportunity to explore different areas within this company. I started researching all of the departments. I literally went through everything you can imagine. I researched HR, public affairs, the research and development department and project management, and then I got to the supply chain.

I remember looking at the intranet because it's like the internal internet for the company. I remember looking at the intranet. I was like, “What the heck is supply chain?” I don't know, then I was typing supply chain. The first PowerPoint slide that I got was all about developing people. I was like, “This is it. I still don't know very well what supply chain is, but if they're focused around people, I'm going to go all in.” What I did was I contacted several people from that organization. I interviewed them, and everyone seemed happy and excited about what they were doing. They were talking about negotiating contracts, building relationships with suppliers and clients. I'm like, “This feels people-oriented. I want all in.”

I reached out to one of the people that I had interviewed, and I asked them for their supervisor. I gave that to my supervisor. Somehow, a lot of people would consider me a career killer, like in this company, wanting to transition from one department to another. One was the most successful move I made in my career because even though there were concerns about my salary is not being raised as much as if I stayed in engineering, I did well in supply chain and I ended up earning a higher salary than those who stayed back in refining. They hated their job. They hated where they were. That's why I always say, “Alignment breeds abundance. The more you align within yourself, the more you follow your calling, and the more abundance is going to be attracted to you because you are not forcing anything.”

It flows naturally to you. I didn't know much about the supply chain or SAP. I had never negotiated an agreement. It came naturally to me because I was interested in learning. I was in love with this approach of focusing on people and building relationships and I ended up doing well. Back then, when I had the panic attack, my first thought was, “I'm quitting this company. I'm not going to go back. I'm going to be honest.”


My first thought wasn't, “Yes, let's align with my purpose by looking at another position.” No, I was fed up with this company at that moment. When I ground myself, I forgave everything and everyone around me, I realized that there was a smarter move than simply quitting and leaving this company because there were many options already within this company that I could explore. I'm telling you this because, and I've been there. I get it. Many times we think that the solution is to quit, leave the company and quit the relationship.

When you ground yourself and take a deep breath, there is usually a more grounded step for you to get closer to your goal. There is more of a transitional step to get closer to a goal. If I had quit from that company, I don't know what would have happened because I don't think I would have gone through the journey that I've gone through that has highly benefited me to fulfill my purpose, which is becoming a full-time coach and speaker or maybe it would have taken me longer. I'm telling you this because your why is what's important.

Your why is like, “I want to have a meaningful career. I want to serve people.” How you get to that is why remains flexible. Even though I didn't go from engineering to coaching and speaking or engineering, working for a company to having a full-time business, that's such a drastic step. I'm not saying that it's impossible. I know people who have done similar things, but even building a business, even to gain credibility or clarity in another field does take time. It does take building relationships or your revenue if you are in a business. I always recommend a more transitional step for you to still get that fulfillment, that meaning maybe not in a way that you were expecting it, but in a way that makes more sense to you to transition.

You got to take action. It took a lot of courage to tell my supervisor from engineering, “I want to go to supply chain,” which was perceived as lower in the chain. In my opinion, it wasn't. I loved it, but a lot of people would perceive it that way. The company that I was working for at that moment were not very supportive on you leaving this team or this apartment to work somewhere else. It took a lot of being out of my comfort zone. It took a lot of courage for me to make that jump, but that jump was the enabler for everything that followed. You don't need to be drastic in your decisions if this is what your decision is about, which is leaving that career or leaving that relationship. Even in romantic relationships, sometimes we think we have to leave the relationship and what needs to happen is a conversation.

There are many people, and I've been there that's afraid to speak up about their concerns and boundaries. In a relationship, sometimes all it takes is for you to be vulnerable, for you to allow your partner to see you and speak up. In a career sometimes all it takes is for you to be vulnerable and ask for what you need. Not only what you need, you have to do your homework and make sure that you are proposing the next step to take action like I did with the supply chain.

It took a little bit few months for me to understand, “Where do I want to go?” For me, one of the biggest takeaways was I don't need to quit this place immediately. I can find something that fulfills my needs, even in this corporation that I was in. I have clients that maybe it's not this example from engineering to supply chain, but maybe they can find that fulfillment, doing extracurricular activities, volunteering activities and something else.

When you look at your values and you answer these three questions, the next step is to ask yourself of all of these values, “What is missing here?” For me, it was fulfillment, mainly because I felt I was being authentic, but didn't feel fulfilled. Of all of these values that you listed, what is missing in your career, relationship and physical health? Whatever thing you are working through, and then whenever you answer that question, the next question is, “How can you fulfill that value?” I would start where you are right now. There are no drastic steps, but if there is nothing where you are that you can do and you have done your homework and you have searched, sometimes you have to find it somewhere else. You got to be loyal to yourself before anyone else.

I truly believe that. If more people were loyal to themselves instead of anyone else, we wouldn't be running many people-pleasing patterns, which are preventing people from being happy and being like having wellness and good mental health in their lives. Be loyal to yourself. Do not do it out of fear. Start making decisions out of love and service because you want to do something greater than yourself. There is always a lesson to be learned.


Start making decisions out of love and out of service because you want to do something greater than yourself.


The most challenging situation in my life and I'm going through one that I'm going to do an episode for next week, and there are many lessons to be learned in these moments of consistently feeling like an imposter. In these moments where you feel like you don't belong, where you don't see a way out. I want you to know that these moments are temporary. I don't want you to wait until crisis hits or until you hit rock bottom or until the pain is intolerable for you to make a decision that you already know is aligned.

Something important about values and this exercise is that ideally we are making decisions because we want to move towards an aspiration instead of moving away from a limitation or something that scares us. If I would have quit that company back then, it was because I was moving away from that pain and fear. If I didn't learn that lesson back then I would move to another company and experienced the same thing and pattern. For me, it was important to learn the lesson of I can find fulfillment somewhere else within this company. The how remains flexible. I have my why very clear, and I'm going to make sure I fulfill that why. the how I get there remains flexible.


Get support. Something that I did earlier on was when I gained clarity on the thing that was missing and the values that were important to me, I started getting support, connected with groups and getting mentorship coaching. I think coaching is a big part for you to continue this purpose-driven journey because we are not meant to do this by ourselves. We can do it, but if you do it with someone else, that is your guide, you can get so much faster and farther there. It's important. If you are consistently feeling like you are an impostor, I want you to see it as the biggest opportunity to go inward and discover yourself because that thing that you're feeling is coming from within yourself. It is not coming from the outside. Doing this exercise that I taught you in this episode, which is the values elicitation, answering all of these questions, and not only that, gathering the courage to take action on that clarity that you'll gain is going to be super important.

Something that I don't mention a lot, but big advocate for whenever I have that panic attack and all of those difficult moment in my life, I decided to take a leave of absence of two months. I gained more clarity during the leave of absence. I traveled. I came back as a new person. I'm a big advocate for leave of absence. They have been life-changing for me. Sometimes it can be very scary to ask for a leave of absence, but if your company is flexible enough and you truly need it, you need to go for it because even in this company it wasn't common for a leave of absence, honestly, and there were consequences, unfortunately, later on for me, even though I was able to get out of the craziness that happened in that moment. You have to be loyal to yourself.


Time on Earth is temporary. Let's make it count.


If you didn't get any takeaway, which I doubt from this episode is be loyal to yourself. Do not wait until you hit a crisis to make a decision that is already aligned and start gathering the courage to make decisions out of love instead of out of fear, to make decisions because you're moving toward an aspiration instead of moving away from pain, fear or a limitation. You have the power within yourself.

Do not let anyone, anything and any environment dictate what to do with your life. You are the creator.

If you found this episode helpful, please share this with your friends and family. My main purpose is to help people find their own lives so they can start creating a life that they believe in and that they're proud of living and so they can wake up excited and motivated most days to fulfill their potential because that's what we are here for. This time on Earth is temporary. Let's make it down. Thank you so much for reading. I hope you truly enjoyed the episode. I'll see you next episode. Bye-Bye.



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