Tag Archives: impostor

How I Battled To Overcome The Impostor Syndrome – Episode 163


How I Battled To Overcome The Impostor Syndrome – Episode 163

How you can build self-confidence by overcoming the Impostor Syndrome
Copyright: Elnur / 123RF Stock Photo

Have you ever struggled with your confidence to launch or record an episode of your podcast? Have you worried that you were just pretending to know what you’re doing? That someone might find out that you didn’t really belong amongst the podcast professionals? That’s the Impostor Syndrome creeping in.

I’ve been there. I was at that point when I started in broadcasting. I continue to fight it today.

Proper preparation will help you feel more confident in your content. You can find a free show prep sheet online at www.PodcastTalentCoach.com. This will help you set a solid foundation.


I learned the value of preparation by fighting my own battle against the Impostor Syndrome.

Impostor Syndrome is defined as a concept describing high-achieving individuals who are marked by an inability to internalize their accomplishments and a persistent fear of being exposed as a “fraud”. Despite external evidence of their competence, those exhibiting the syndrome remain convinced that they are frauds and do not deserve the success they have achieved.

While in college getting my degree in architecture, I became a party DJ to make some extra cash. Music had always been a big part of my life. I had been a musician since I was 11. However, I had wanted to be an architect since 6th grade. Getting my architecture degree was never in question.

Around my junior year of architecture school, I started becoming disenchanted with the field. It was then that I picked up a part time summer job at a radio station where my brother worked. Just to make some extra cash. The drafting firm where I had been working recently closed its doors as the owner went to work for a larger, manufacturing company.

As my passion for architecture waned, my passion for radio grew. Next thing you know, I’m taking classes in the College of Journalism and becoming the music director of the college radio station.

My music director position at the college station turned into another part time commercial radio job. That position eventually became full time.

Architecture was still part of my life. I was nearly done with my degree and didn’t want to throw it all away at that point. So, I finished my degree in architecture and continued to work in radio. Oddly enough, my only architecture job came at that drafting firm while I was still in high school.

When I began in radio, the impostor syndrome heavily kicked in. I had an architecture background. What right did I have to be on the radio?

Who was I to think I was in a position to be amongst these radio guys who had been doing it for many, many years and had paid their dues.

When I would interview famous musicians, the Impostor Syndrome would really fire up. I’m just a kid out of college with an architecture degree faking my way through radio.

I felt like I was playing dress up and pretending to be one of them. It took me years to get over that and build the confidence to perform on a daily basis.

After doing it for over 25 years, I got to the point where I was programming multiple radio stations at the same time. Some of those station were recognized with national awards from the National Association of Broadcasters.

The stations I was programming ranked #1 quite often. My own show was regularly #1. I built the confidence within myself to deliver content that was compelling and connected with my audience.


When I launched my podcast, I quickly went back to the beginning. The imposter syndrome kicked in again.

Who was I to think I could build a successful podcast amongst these greats that had been doing it for years? Dave Jackson at the School of Podcasting has been podcasting since 2005. I’m just starting. How can I possibly think I belong in the same arena as Dave?

Then, I started thinking about my story. I had been here before. My knowledge and experience sets me apart from a lot of podcasters. Even podcasters who had been producing content for years. That helped me shake the impostor syndrome and publish my content.


Recently, I ran into that little voice again. I was in a discussion with my mastermind about the next step we each needed to take to move forward. What was the “next thing”?

As we were talking it through, I finally came to the conclusion that the voice was holding me back. What if I put all this work into creating a course or book or workshop and nobody came? The group helped me once again recognize my experience and knowledge.

An episode of “DailyVee” with Gary Vaynerchuk today did the same thing for me. Gary said, “Going 0-for-5 is better than going 0-for-0. At least you’re learning something.” That made total sense to me.


Ignore the voice and move forward. Regardless of the outcome, you’ll learn something and be able to do it better next time.

That’s what I want to help you do. I want to be that cheerleader for you if you don’t have the history that I have to overcome that little voice inside your head doubting your ability. You can do it. You belong. You have just as much authority on your opinion as anyone. Let’s get it out to the world.

It is fairly simple to set up a mic, mixer and laptop. Heck, you don’t even need a mixer. Plug straight into your computer.

Load up some software and record some audio. Setting up a website with WordPress, creating a Libsyn account and posting a show isn’t very complicated.

Even if you are not very technically savvy, there are great people like Dave Jackson and the School of Podcasting that can help you with every step along the way. He even has a great step-by-step checklist. You’ll have a podcast launched in a few weeks.

Creating the platform is only the first step. Creating great content is up to you. Your content isn’t something you can outsource. You need to find the confidence to put your thoughts and feelings out into the world.


How do I suggest you bootstrap to begin? Make it simple. Get an inexpensive microphone, like a $60 ATR-2100. Plug directly into your computer with the USB cable. If you’re adventuresome, pick up an inexpensive mixer like a $99 Yamaha 4-channel. I just purchase an 8-channel mixer at a pawn shop for $65.

Get a free WordPress site. Create a Libsyn account for $15 a month. You’ll need a computer and some free Audacity software. If you already have a laptop, you’re up and running for under $100. Again, Dave Jackson has a whole list of recommendations for you at www.SchoolOfPodcasting.com. I leave the technical stuff up to him.


My goal is to transform your content and beef up your confidence.

So, how do you define your niche? Will anybody really care?

It is easy for the impostor syndrome to sneak in here. Your internal impostor will tell you nobody cares about that topic. Your niche is too small and nobody will come. You’ll be talking to yourself.

Fight it. Your niche size doesn’t matter as much as the passion of the niche community. If you have a group of people that you are passionate about, and they are loyal to a particular subject, run with it.

The more narrowly you target your niche the better. If you are interested in fishing, pick a small niche. If you love fly fishing, but create your show around fishing in general, you will find it tough to build loyalty. If your show is only on fly fishing, you will primarily attract those interested in fly fishing. The niche is smaller than fishing in general. However, every show will be of interest to your audience.

If your show is “the Fishing Show” and all about fishing, you’ll be hit and miss. One week you talk about fly fishing. The next week you discuss deep sea fishing. Now, your fly fisher friends only get what they seek on occasion. You aren’t catering specifically to them. People will only check our your show now and then. You will find it difficult to build a passionate tribe.

The audience for “The Fishing Show” looks like a bigger audience than “The Fly Fishing Show”. But, it is deceiving. The passion lies in the niche.

Be confident in your topic. You will start slowly. But, it will grow. Stay the course.


How do you get ready? How do you overcome the pre-launch jitters?

Planning your podcast will help relieve a bit of the anxiety. If you know where you’re going, you can stay focused on the goal and fight through the self doubt. Plan your show before you begin.

Let’s discuss the 5 Speech class basics and how they pertain to your show.

1. Lead with a provocative point – capture their attention right at the beginning.

2. Dazzle with details – make the story come to life.

3. Take the first exit – Get out when you have the first opportunity.

4. Don’t repeat yourself and overstay your welcome – In talk radio, it’s called the call circle.

5. Include a call to action – this is the whole reason you’re doing a podcast and creating a tribe.

Have confidence in your content. Fight the impostor syndrome. Do all you can to push forward and get your content out.

When you plan your show, it makes it easier to stay focused on the goal. Know what you hope to communicate on this episode. Lay out how you plan to communicate that information. Then, define your intro, details and exit. Define your call-to-action and determine where you plan to incorporate it into the show.

Now, all you need to do is record the show and post it for the world to hear. The more work you do ahead of recording, the easier it is to believe in yourself while the show is rolling. Remember, the main reason you are podcasting is because it is fun. Enjoy the process.


This week, plan your show.

Determine the topics for the show.

Lay out your intro, details and conclusion for each topic.

Define your call-to-action.


You can find a free show prep sheet online at www.PodcastTalentCoach.com.

Use solid preparation for your show to gain more confidence in your content and battle the Impostor Syndrome.

Let me know how I can help. E-mail me at anytime at Coach@PodcastTalentCoach.com.


You can find my podcast and other tools to help you create great content at www.PodcastTalentCoach.com.

Let’s turn your information into engaging entertainment.

How Do I Market My Podcast ? – Episode 114


How Do I Market My Podcast ? – Episode 114

Answering listener questions

Thank you for allowing me to help you with your podcast. I get a great deal of joy helping podcasters achieve their goals.

A few weeks ago, I asked you for questions and ways I can help you with your show. I received some great questions from you. This week, I want to go through a few with you.

How do you market your show? How can I get to the point of launch? How do I fight the Impostor Syndrome? How do I name my podcast?

I’m struggling with promotion/marketing and spreading the word.
-Greg from the “I Want To Know” podcast

There are many ways to market and promote. Most of it takes time.

I learned a lot about marketing from Paige Nienaber from CPR Promotions. He often refers to this drip style of marketing as dog crap marketing.

Paige lives in Minnesota, where it snows a lot every year. The ground is typically covered with snow from November to March.

Paige also owns a dog. If you are a dog owner, you know all about cleaning the back yard. The dog makes deposits. You clean it up.

Just because there is snow on the ground doesn’t mean the dog doesn’t need to go out to do his business. It just makes it tougher to clean up.

When the snow finally melts in March, you find the results of all the hard work of your dog. It wasn’t done in a few days. It built up slowly over months of productive work by the dog.

The same is true for your marketing. Work on it daily and let the results build over time.

Here are six tips you can use.

1. Know your most frequent listeners by name and use them.
2. Use stories to stand out and be remembered.
3. Host events to create community.
4. Make it easy to share your content.
5. Don’t blow your first impression.
6. Write great show notes with helpful links that your audience can use.

You can find a worksheet of 52 podcast marketing tips at PodcastTalentCoach.com.

I am a beginner, not even live yet, in fact having problems getting from intro, outro, episode and artwork to live. So frustrating, feeling like I am THIS close.
– Corrine

This is a matter of finding the courage to launch. Fight the impostor syndrome. Learn as you go.

If you have your intro, outro, episode notes and artwork, you are ready to go live.

Create a WordPress site and sign up for a Libsyn account. This should put you in a great position to launch.

If it is belief in yourself that is holding you back, take baby steps. Record three episodes telling yourself you won’t really post these. You are just practicing. Get them recorded.

Once you have the episodes recorded, put them on Libsyn and post to your WordPress site to ensure the technology works. Test the links. Listen to the shows. Submit it to iTunes. Just tell yourself you can always change it if necessary.

After you are sure everything works, move on to the next few episodes. Changing those first three episodes is posible. However, it is more work. I think once you get them posted, you will be more excited and interested in working on the next few episodes rather than tinkering with the first three. Move forward in baby steps.

If it is the technology that is holding you back, check out Dave Jackson at the School of Podcasting. He has great tutorials that will help you create a website, set up a Libsyn account and submit your show to iTunes. He also has a great offer where he will set up your site if you order your hosting through him.

Dave always says if you can post on Facebook, you can create a website with WordPress and launch a podcast. Don’t let the intimidation stop you. There are many resources that can help.

I want to launch a show I can be proud of. I quickly get into my own head and get slapped down by the Nobody’s Going to Like This Fairy. Stupid fairy. Any tips for shutting that voice up?
– Greg

I began my broadcasting career when I was 19. It was completely by accident. I was going to college to get my architecture degree. Since I was 12-years-old, I had been tailoring my education to be an architect or engineer.

In college, I had the same fear of public speaking as most people. In our design classes, we had to do presentations in front of a panel of judges. I absolutely hated doing these presentations.

During class, four or five students would present during the hour. It would take about a week to get through the entire class. That was the worst part. The anxiety would build for presentation day only to not get your name called. I would have to live through the anxiety again in anticipation of presenting during the next class.

I never envisioned being a public speaker, radio talent or any other presenter.

My younger brother worked for a radio station at the time. I was home for the weekend doing nothing like most college students. That was when the phone rang. It was the manager of the radio station looking for my brother to fill in during a shift. My brother wasn’t home and I was offered a part-time job.

My career in radio started just running the board for long-form programs. I only talked on the radio between the 30-minute shows. I might give the time or temperature. Otherwise, I would sit around while the show played. Speaking was minimal.

As an elective for my architecture degree, I took a class called “Broadcasting For The Non-Major”. I figured being in a radio station for a part-time job should make this class a little easier. It would also help me learn more about my job.

That class eventually led me to become the music director of the college station.

That position got me a job working overnights at a commercial station. Suddenly, I instantly found myself talking to 10,000 people. I was no longer talking between long-form programs to a handful of old people. This was real radio.

Over time, I started to get comfortable talking on the radio. It took a little time. I eventually got there.

As I started picking up more hours on the air, my boss started to send me out broadcasting live in front of a crowd. I was being sent onstage to introduce concerts in front of 10,000 people. These were no longer people I couldn’t see. They were right in front of me.

It took me years to figure out how to overcome those butterflies I would get each time I stepped in front of a crowd. There were tips and tricks I learned along the way to help me. It was a combination of things I learned over the years that helped me defeat the jitters. Here are a few ways to shake the butterflies out of your system. It could save you years of trial and error.

Preparation is the key idea in the process.

Here are four steps to properly prepare for your show.

1. Overcome Jitters
– Prepare your material
– Rehearse
– Focus on one person – preferably your single target listener you have defined
– Tell yourself you are an expert at your opinion
– Making people either love you or hate you only means you are making people care.

2. Create Great Notes
– Bullet points – don’t script
– Tell stories
– Give examples – play audio
– Determine your open and close, intro and outro for show and each topic … “now it’s time for” is not an appropriate intro

3. Set the Room
– Get the temp correct – be comfortable
– Get some room temp water
– No distractions – phone, family

4. Prepare Your Equipment
– Close other programs
– Prepare your software
– Turn off your phone, close e-mail, close IM
– Test your mic and set your levels
Contact and prepare guests & co-hosts

The places I am struggling with my future podcast is mainly the what to name it. I have ideas for about 3 different podcasts (though I only want to start with one). The main problem is naming them also i.e. website name and so forth. I have an idea about formats but with never having done a podcast, they seem to escape me. I know I won’t be perfect at first and I am okay with that. But at the same time I would like to be somewhat in order. A little more guidance on this would be greatly appreciated.
– Richard

The name of your podcast sets up your brand. It should tell people exactly what they will get from your show. Don’t get cute.

If you name your show “Outside the Lines”, nobody will know if that is a show about paint-by-numbers, football or off roading. “School of Podcasting” is pretty clear. You know what you are going to get.

Take five minutes and brainstorm. Start writing every name you can think of that relates to your niche. There are no bad ideas here. Every idea will lead to another. Don’t critique. Just write as much as you can.

After the five minutes is up, review the list. Highlight the names you like.

These names should be clear about your content. Find names that capture the imagination. Look for names that sound interesting.

Once you have narrowed the list to five to ten names, ask others for their opinion. Explain the criteria of a great name. Have them give you their top three choices.

Read over the five or ten lists of three. Look for the names that get the most mentions.

Now, take action. Pick a name and run with it.

What is the worst that can happen? You get a year into it and need to adjust it. That’s ok. On a podcast the other day, I heard someone say, “If you wait until all of the stoplights turn green before you begin your journey, you’ll never start.”

Just begin. Don’t wait for things to be perfect. That will never happen. Just start.
Thanks for all of the questions. If you need help with your podcast? E-mail me any time at Coach@PodcastTalentCoach.com. Let’s see what we can do.

You can find my podcast and other tools to help you create great content at www.PodcastTalentCoach.com.

Let’s turn your information into engaging entertainment.

What Is Your Why? – Episode 086


What Is Your Why? – Episode 086

Thank You

What is your “why”? Why do you do what you do?


I’ve been doing a lot of work on my business over the past few weeks. In “The E-Myth Revisited”, author Michael Gerber talks about moving your business forward by spending more time working on your business rather than in it.

That is exactly what I’ve been doing lately. Am I going down the right path?

I thought you and I could review my progress with the hope that it will help you with your process.

We all face the little voice inside our head telling us we are not good enough. Whether we have been doing this for six months or six years, we all need a little confidence boost every now and then. It is only natural.

I will be speaking at New Media Expo in a week. (Last week to save $100 HERE.) My review of my business was inspired by NMX. I want to be sure things are in place to make the most of the opportunity.

As I have stepped back to look at the big picture, I have been reviewing a few great books like “The E-Myth Revisited”.


Another book that has helped my review is “Start With Why” by Simon Sinek. The book is focused on the theory that people do not buy what you do. They buy why you do it. Turn your customers into fans by making them believe in your mission and purpose.

Have I sufficiently defined my why? I thought I had. Even after refining it a few times, I am not quite sure.

Podcast Talent Coach is just over 18 months old as a podcast. From the limited feedback I have received from you, I am not quite sure my “why” is clear enough to truly inspire you to create great work.

Podcast Talent Coach was launched to help podcasters gain more confidence in their content. When you open the mic, I want you to truly believe that your voice matters. I want to arm you with the confidence you need to beat back the butterflies and excuses in order to create powerful content episode after episode.

With the information I provide every week, you should be able to take your information and turn it into entertainment that is engaging for your audience and unique to you.


I have been in radio for 25 years. I have been coaching radio talent for 20 of those years. As I listened to podcasts, I realized so many podcasts could improve with a few tips I have learned and used over those two-and-a-half decades.

The coaching experience I have gained could easily be used to help podcasters create amazing content that could replace other entertainment sources if I could only reach those podcasters.

Eighteen months in, I have only connected with a handful of podcasters interested in making that amazing entertainment a reality.

As I step back and examine the progress, I come up with four possible explanations.


One reason could be you get all you need from this podcast and the free worksheets I offer. You don’t feel one-on-one coaching is necessary.

If this was the reason, I would see more downloads of both.


Another explanation could be I haven’t done a good job spreading the word about the show.

When I launched, the show got a solid start. I hit a few hundred downloads quickly. Things slowed down quite a bit after that. A few hundred downloads is about average and nothing to sneeze at. I am grateful for each person that joins me every week. Thank you for being here.

As I continue to produce content for you each week, I am not seeing further growth. That concerns me.


A third reason I may not be seeing continued growth could be the market. Maybe I have not done a good job creating a solution to a problem my audience knows they have.

This is a likely reason. Most podcasters who have the confidence and ego to open the mic and create content every week believe they are good enough the way they are. They may not realize that there are steps they could take to create more powerful content.

It is also possible the problem I am trying to solve does not exist. As I help radio broadcasters improve their shows, many of them fear the critique then love the feedback and growth after the fact.

4. THE “WHY”

The final reason may be my “why”. It is very possible that I have not sold my “why” well enough.

I have defined what I do quite a bit. But have I really defined why I do it for you? Maybe not.

My love for great radio and creative podcasts drive me to do this show every week. I love being able to create great audio that people look forward to every week.

More importantly, I love sharing my knowledge of that process with others. You can create amazing visual images in the theater of the mind to inspire your listener with your podcasts. Inspire them in such a way that they cannot wait for the next episode.

That incredible anticipation of future episodes is what makes this medium so wonderful. Holding the attention of a listener to the point where they cannot get enough of you is an amazing feeling.



Dave Jackson and I do a show together called “The Podcast Review Show”. Each episode, we invite a podcaster on the show to have his or her podcast reviewed by the two of us. It takes a great deal of confidence to have two coaches review your show right in front of you.

Every guest is a little nervous coming on the show. They are not quite sure what we will say. They fear we are going to tear their podcast apart and affirm their belief that they are not good enough.

During the show, Dave and I look for areas of the episode that are really good. Our goal is to help podcasters do more of the good. In turn, that will replace the stuff that isn’t as strong. In the end, the podcast gets better.

Every guest fears coming on the show, but truly appreciates the actionable feedback at the end of the process.


Here lies my problem with Podcast Talent Coach. It is not easy to get you over the fear of being critiqued in order to get you the joy of the improvement. That fear at the front door is a pretty big barrier. It is very similar to the fear of getting in the roller coaster line in order to enjoy the exhilaration when you finally get off of the ride.

The anticipation and fear could be preventing Podcast Talent Coach from growing.

Then again, I am not sure what is holding me back. Maybe it is a bit of all four. My gut tells me it is probably the lack of communicating my “why”.


Have you communicated your “why” well enough? Have you inspired your fan with the reason you create your content every week?

I haven’t come up with the answer to my problem quite yet. I’ll continue working on my business until I find the solution.

I would love your input. As a frequent listener to Podcast Talent Coach, what do you hear? What brings you back every week? What has prevented you from getting more involved with coaching?

E-mail me anytime you would like at Coach@PodcastTalentCoach.com. Let me know what you think. How can I better help you?

Thanks for being here. I truly value your attention every week. You mean the world to me. I will help you any way I can.

Prepare to Battle the Impostor …

Prepare to Battle the Impostor

If you have ever fought the impostor syndrome, being more prepared will help you win that battle. Being prepared for your show will give you focus, make your show more entertaining, and create stronger relationships with your listeners. Most importantly, it will give you confidence to overcome impostor syndrome. You will be able to build that belief in yourself.

The impostor syndrome, or impostor phenomenon, is the psychological phenomenon in which people are unable to internalize their accomplishments. Despite external evidence that proves they are deserving and successful, those that suffer from impostor syndrome do not feel they deserve the success. These people believe their success came about not because of skill or expertise, but more because of luck or manipulation. Students sometimes face this phenomenon in college when they tell themselves they really don’t belong in such an esteemed university and others may soon discover the fraud.

It is common for us all to experience the impostor syndrome to some extent. The phenomenon is roughly the opposite of your ego. Your ego is telling you that you are the best around and people should admire everything you’ve done.

Your internal impostor is then telling you that you have no authority to be doing this. You are a fake and a fraud with no credibility. The only reason you are in this position according to your internal impostor is because nobody has yet discovered the truth.

Both your ego and impostor exist within you. Learning how to manage both is a challenge. Take steps to build confidence within yourself. Understand that others fight the same battle. You are not alone.

You have every right to create a great podcast.  You have just as much right as the next podcaster.  There is only one expert at your opinion.  That expert is you.  Nobody knows more about your beliefs and opinion than you do.  Develop confidence in yourself.  You have great content and a unique opinion.  Believe in yourself.  You’ll be great.  Prepare for it.

Being well prepared for your show and having the confidence to stick to the plan will help you win that battle against you internal impostor.