The Pa’lante Therapy Inc. Blog

November 24

Breaking the Chains of Imposter Syndrome: Empowering Latinx Communities

By Yanira Hernandez

Do you ever find yourself grappling with self-doubt, struggling to set boundaries at work, or feeling like you can’t internalize your own successes? Are you your own harshest critic, constantly fearing that you’ll be exposed as a fraud? If these thoughts and questions resonate with you, you’re not alone. Many individuals, particularly those from historically marginalized backgrounds, such as Latinx, BIPOC, and LGBTQIA+ communities, contend with these self-sabotaging thoughts, and this experience is commonly referred to as imposter syndrome.

Defining Imposter Syndrome

First introduced by psychologists Suzanne Imes, PhD, and Pauline Rose Clance, PhD, in the 1970s, imposter syndrome is described as a phenomenon that affects high achievers who struggle to acknowledge and accept their own accomplishments. It makes you feel like an imposter, insecure in the face of recognition or accolades, despite evidence that you are skilled, capable, and uniquely successful.

Recognizing The Signs

Common characteristics or signs of imposter syndrome include:

  • Self-doubt
  • Feelings of inadequacy
  • Constant comparison to others
  • Relentless pursuit of perfection
  • Fear of failure
  • Overpreparation for tasks
  • An inability to realistically assess your competence and skills
  • Attributing your success to external factors
  • Minimizing or dismissing positive feedback
  • Berating your own performance

Imposter Syndrome And Marginalized Communities

While the pressure to achieve and doubts about personal success are widespread, these experiences are more prevalent among BIPOC and marginalized communities. Individuals in these groups often face systemic oppression or are repeatedly told they are not good enough, leading them to internalize these negative narratives. For those with layered identities, such as being a first-generation Latinx individual, the burden of imposter syndrome can be particularly heavy. Research even shows that imposter syndrome can contribute to mental health issues like anxiety, depression, or traumatic stress, further complicating mental well-being in communities of color.

Overcoming Imposter Syndrome

So, how can we combat and overcome imposter syndrome?

  1. Break the Silence: Talk to someone you trust. Your feelings are valid, and you are not alone in this struggle.
  2. Identify Negative Core Beliefs: Reflect on the negative core beliefs causing imposter syndrome. Are these your own thoughts or someone else’s? What do you truly value about yourself?
  3. Build a Support Network: Seek support from trusted friends, mentors, coaches, or therapists who can help you navigate these feelings.
  4. Change Your Perspective: Focus on effort rather than fixed traits when assessing your accomplishments.
  5. Practice Self-Affirmations: Create a list of positive self-affirmations to challenge and conquer intrusive thoughts. Consistent repetition and intention can transform your mindset.
  6. Celebrate Success: Don’t downplay your achievements; instead, acknowledge and celebrate them. You’ve earned the recognition.
  7. Practice Self-Compassion: Be kind to yourself, recognizing that you are doing your best.

Embrace Your Worth

Remember, you are not alone, and others share your struggles. Embrace self-love and self-compassion as you reclaim your self-worth, unapologetically. You are more than enough!

If you find yourself identifying with these struggles and wish to explore strategies for overcoming imposter syndrome, consider reaching out to Pa’lante Therapy Inc. Dr. Yanira Hernandez is here to support you on your journey towards self-acceptance and success.

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Because Social Work Month starts in a few days… 

Fellow educators, school social workers, school psychologists, school counselors… can y’all relate? 😩 

What else would you add? 

therapist #therapisthumor #therapy #therapymemes #bilingualtherapy #mentalhealth #latinatherapist #firstgenlatina #firstgen #socialwork #lcsw #msw #psychology #counseling #saludmental #terapia #latina #reels #reelsinstagram #reelsvideo #explore #palante #palantetherapy #schoolsocialworker #educator #schoolcounselor #schoolpsychologist #socialworkmonth
To my First Gen’s’/children of immigrants who were told to silence their identities in professional spaces in order to be considered “professional enough”…

Proudly reclaim your identities, tu cultura, tu voz, tus raíces. 

Proudly wear your ‘empowerment’ T-shirt that makes you feel connected to your comunidad. 

Proudly saca las tortillas, ese guisado con salsa que lleva sazón de tu familia to the office for lunch. 

Proudly uplift your voice with the accent from your family/ancestors radiating with every word you say during your presentation. 

Proudly bump your music that speaks to your soul y te trae lindos recuerdos as you enter and exit your office building. 

Be unapologetically you! ✨🌵

Con porras y abrazos, 
Dra.Hernández @palantetherapy 

#firstgen #firstgeneration #childrenofimmigrants #professional #healing #latinatherapist #firstgenlatina #therapistsofinstagram #therapist #latina #latinx #latine #latinos #socialwork #therapy #terapia #saludmental #doctora #terapeuta #highered #highereducation #palante #palantetherapy #reels #reelsinstagram #explore #southcentral #ucla #usc
✨Self Love✨ this month looks like investing in upgrading my website to uplift, empower, and support the Latine comunidad through diverse mental health related services. 💕

I realized I haven’t introduced myself in a while so here are some fun facts: 

❣️physical activity and movement are essential part of my identity whether it is through dancing, hiking, or weightlifting 
❣️love dancing to banda, cumbia, and reggae/dancehall (I can get low yall but I probably won’t come back up 😆) 
❣️Love to travel. Favorite places are Mexico City and Jamaica 
❣️I’m a lefty so most things I create are crooked or super tilted lol (don’t ask me to do a straight line 🥲) 
❣️The name of my practice, “Pa’lante Therapy” was largely ignited by my dissertation title, “Pa’delante, La Lucha Continua: Resliency among Latinx College Students with Past Experiences of Bullying” 

With that said, Welcome to Pa’lante Therapy! ✨ 

My practice was birthed as a result of my lived experiences as a First Gen Latina raised by immigrant parents in South Central LA who has experience trauma of many forms and as a result of my professional experience as a mental health provider. Uplifting my Latine immigrant community is what I’m mostly passionate about. 💕

I’m extremely excited to share with you all my upgraded website with new offerings: 

❣️Individual Therapy, Immigration Psych Evaluations, Femtorship style Coaching to Early Career Latinas in Mental Health related Careers, Speaking Engagements, & Peer Clinical Consultations 

I want to shoutout @peanutmedia for her patience and bringing my website vision to life. 💕 It was extremely important to me that I hired a Latina and approach this project with intentionality and authenticity. 

May we continue to heal our intergenerational wounds and reclaim nuestras raíces ✨

Con mucho agradecimiento, 
Dra. Hernández @palantetherapy 

#firstgen #firstgeneration #firstgenlatina #privatepractice #latinaentrepreneur #website #websitedesign #therapy #therapist #latinatherpist #trauma #healing #mentalhealth #immigrantparents #latina #latinx #latine #latinos #saludmental #reels #reelsinstagram #explore #xavi #palante #palantetherapy #socialwork #lcsw #coaching
Generational healing looks like… 
my undocumented immigrant mami starting therapy for the first time in her 50s, acknowledging how trauma has impacted her and her children, destigmatizing therapy and mental health una conversación a la vez, and leaning into healthier ways of coping. 🥹❤️

I’m incredibly proud of my mami for bravely stepping into her healing era. Cómo muchos (undocumented) immigrants, my parents have endured insurmountable pain and trauma throughout their lives in their homelands and while in pursuit of the “American Dream.” It’s been a nightmare navigating systems for them especially the medical/health care system. But last year, my mami was a warrior and decided to step into many unknowns regarding her health and mental health. I can acknowledge that there are painful memories of my childhood due to unresolved generational trauma AND I can affirm my parents’ commitment to healing and doing the best they can with the resources they have. 

My brother and I have encouraged my mom to go to therapy countless of times but she bravely decided to go on her terms (and after navigating the shi**y insurance oppressive system). My mami’s acts of resistance have encouraged my papi to *think* about seeking therapy too. Pasito a pasito. ☺️

A loud shoutout to all the mami’s, tias, abuelitas, señoras, y doñas in their older adulthood who are making the brave decision to go to therapy and reminding us that it is never too late to heal and break unhealthy generational cycles. 🥹

Me dan una gran felicidad to see many older folks in mental health related workshops inquiring about therapy not only for their children or family members but also for themselves. Every time I facilitate these workshops my heart is filled with joy. 💕

Con mucha luz y felicidad,
Dra. Hernández @palantetherapy 

#trauma #healingjourney #healing #generationaltrauma #generationalhealing #undocumented #immigrants #firstgen #firstgeneration #therapy #mentalhealth #mentalhealthmatters #latina #latino #latinx #latine #firstgenlatina #latinatherapist #therapist #terapeuta #saludmental #reels #reelsinstagram #explore #palante #palantetherapy #socialwork #lcsw #southcentral #losangeles

Reclaim Your Worth And Restore To Your Authentic Self!