Overcoming Imposter Syndrome Starts by Acknowledging It

Even getting a job in the city wasn’t enough to make me feel validated.

Leigh Victoria Fisher, MS
6 min readOct 24, 2022


Illustration Courtesy of VectorMine

Imposter syndrome made me believe I’d never make it in NYC — even getting a job and an apartment in the city wasn’t enough to make me feel like I did it. You see the logic gap here too, right?

My little New York story started in 2019 when I accepted a job offer, starting riding NJ Transit into Manhattan 5 days a week, and told myself that it’s okay to walk the beaten path my grandparents did. I started grad school in the city in 2020. Then finally, in 2021, rent prices in Jersey skyrocketed so high that I moved to Brooklyn.

Even with all of those very clear pieces of evidence, imposter syndrome gets in the way. It has an insidious way of convincing you that you are not enough, even when all the data shows that you are. A peer-reviewed, published study on imposter phenomenon reported that “Up to 82% of people face feelings of impostor phenomenon, struggling with the sense they haven’t earned what they’ve achieved and are a fraud.”

Crossing big milestones often isn’t enough to quiet imposter syndrome.

Even when I moved to Brooklyn in 2021, I didn’t really think I made it in the city. I was literally living in one of the five boroughs and I still didn’t feel good enough. After all, there’s that old adage — if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere. It’s just a phrase from an old song, but it’s a line of verse I grew up hearing. Deep down, I do still believe it.

The sad truth about imposter syndrome is that you’re never going to cross a big enough milestone to make it go away instantaneously. I used to think that if I hit a certain accomplishment, I’d magically no longer feel like an imposter. But it’s not so easy to shake off the thought patterns that govern our every action.

Imposter syndrome makes it incredibly harder to step into your real identity.



Leigh Victoria Fisher, MS

Brooklyn-based writer and poet. Designer in NYC. Drinks books and loves coffee. Has an MS from NYU in Integrated Design & Media. Working on an MFA in Fiction.