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LinkedIn Can Trigger Imposter Syndrome, a Study Finds



LinkedIn Can Trigger Imposter Syndrome, a Study Finds

(CTN News) – According to a survey conducted among LinkedIn users, it was found that engaging with the widely-used platform was associated with experiences of imposter syndrome, which refers to a sense of inadequacy despite having evidence of success.

Individuals reported a lack of professional confidence not only when they perused posts made by others, but also when they shared their own personal accomplishments.

Researchers suggest that imposter LinkedIn syndrome, along with the fear of being exposed as a fraud, can contribute to feelings of anxiety and depressive thoughts.

A recent study conducted by researchers from the Business School has confirmed the link between social media and imposter syndrome. The study involved 506 individuals who were educated to at least a Bachelor’s degree level and had an average age of 36.

The researchers tested the effects of using LinkedIn in two ways, one to assess the effects of browsing others’ posts and the other to gauge how individuals felt after posting their own successes.

The study found that thoughts of self-doubt drove many users to directly address the issue by paying for competency skills courses. The research has been published in Psychology and Marketing.

According to a recent online experiment, researchers discovered that individuals who read other people’s posts were more likely to experience imposter syndrome, even if the association was small.

The study also revealed that posting on professional social network sites like LinkedIn and Xing was significantly linked to imposter syndrome, even after considering other potential factors.

With over 930 million users worldwide, LinkedIn has become a popular platform for professionals.

The social media platforms provide career growth prospects, networking opportunities, and valuable industry insights and materials. However, experts argue that the study reveals an undesirable consequence of these platforms.

Acknowledging the prevalence of imposter syndrome among professionals could greatly aid in promoting employee development initiatives. According to researchers, when employees realize that others have gone through similar experiences, it may help alleviate negative emotions.

According to Dr. Ben Marder, simply scrolling through the newsfeed or sharing a personal accomplishment on LinkedIn can lead to introspection about our professional identity, potentially sparking feelings of being an imposter.

These feelings stem from a fear of being exposed as someone who is not as competent as others perceive us to be. Dr. Marder’s research reveals that the detrimental impact of social media on our well-being is not solely due to comparing ourselves to others, but also because we tend to believe that others hold a higher opinion of us than we hold of ourselves


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