“There is no substance in what you sell and now the world will see you for who you really are, Impostor. You may have them fooled, but we can see straight through you.” Fit For A King, Impostor

With “annual review season” now almost over, I’ve been thinking a lot about impostor syndrome and the converse Dunning-Kruger effect. Having to evaluate yourself (more so than having others evaluate you) opens up an internal dialog about how competent you really believe yourself to be, which can easily lead to feeling like an impostor.

So, with those feelings in mind, here is an assortment of thoughts and questions for some self-evaluation:

  • Web developers talk about imposter syndrome a lot, maybe that’s because most of us are self-taught.

  • Are unqualified people who get hired just exhibiting the Dunning-Kruger effect convincingly? Conversely, how many don’t get hired due to lack of confidence?

  • Is it impostor syndrome if I think I’m smart, but just not smart enough?

  • Maybe feeling like an impostor isn’t so bad if it keeps you humble.

  • I’d much rather deal with someone suffering from impostor syndrome than someone with a huge ego.

  • I feel like there are lots of large egos in the open source community. But, maybe that is simply due to everyone feeling insecure and overcompensating.

  • Do we call it “impostor syndrome” because “lack of confidence” doesn’t sound as good?