Dr Lakshmi Ramachandran and Anupama Murali: Imposter Syndrome – How to move from “Am I valued?” to “I am valuable!”

Written by Maanasa Ravikumar, Member of SgWIS

We had the pleasure of welcoming Dr. Lakshmi as a speaker for our April 2021 webinar session, on the topic of imposter syndrome. Along with her co-speaker, Anupama Murali, Dr. Lakshmi provided an informative overview of what imposter syndrome is, and how to understand and identify signs of this paralysing phenomenon in our professional lives. Through a well-structured and educational 75 min session, the duo guided the attendees through a journey of self-inquiry to explore where the sensibilities of an imposter stem from within us, before providing several approaches and strategies to tackle them.

Seamlessly and effectively, Dr. Lakshmi and Anupama commanded the session from the get-go to engage over a hundred attendees through interactive polls and mindfulness exercises. The activities were aimed at looking inward to develop a sense of awareness, acceptance, motivation and strength to overcome the many curve balls imposter syndrome may throw at us, and emerge more confident and comfortable in our own skins. Importantly, the emphasis places on concepts such as “enoughness” and adequacy in one’s skills, abilities and sense of self provided a valuable and practical toolkit for attendees to explore ways to redefine their own images and manifestations of imposter syndrome. Moreover, Dr. Lakshmi and Anupama brought forth their own personal experiences and battles with imposter syndrome, allowing for candid, honest, tangible and relatable discussions within the group.  

Through a short session, Dr. Lakshmi and Anupama successfully managed to tease apart a highly complex and intricate condition that plagues men and women alike, in academia and beyond. The focus they placed on tailored individual action as opposed to a “one size fits all” solution to managing imposter syndrome was invaluable. Furthermore, the professionalism and knowledge Dr. Lakshmi and Anupama exhibited, together with an approachable and friendly presence enabled the audience to stay interested, empathetic and connected throughout. We were very happy to see that the attendees left the session feeling enriched and encouraged to nurture their mental wellbeing and embrace the confident leader within!

We wish Dr. Lakshmi and Anupama the very best, and hope they continue their endeavours to educate, guide and share knowledge on how to manage imposter syndrome effectively.