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The Impostor Phenomenon was identified from clinical observations during therapeutic sessions with high achieving women by Dr Pauline Clance. Despite objective evidence of success, these women had a pervasive psychological experience believing that they were intellectual frauds and feared being recognised as impostors. They suffered from anxiety, fear of failure and dissatisfaction with life. This article reviews definitions and characteristics of trait Impostorism, some antecedents, such as personality and family achievement environment and psychological distress as a consequence of Impostorism.
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