Career Testing
Career Testing
Career Testing
WORKPLACE / MAY. 30, 2016
version 8, draft 8

4 Reasons You Shouldn’t Feel Stupid at Work

Sometimes, you might feel like you are stupid and incompetent at work. But, why do you think you feel this way ?  Find out why you have to stop now !

Have you ever been in a meeting where you had no idea of what was being discussed or didn’t quite understand what was going on? Has that made you feel stupid? If the answer is yes, then you know what it's like to feel incompetent at work, and it can be a terrible feeling. But, this lack of self-confidence can have a range of consequences on your job performance.

See Also: How to Get a Job By Acting Stupid

As such it’s important to understand that there is no reason to feel stupid…

1. Everyone Makes Mistakes

man made a mistake
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It’s possible that you got frustrated because of a mistake that you have made at work. This may have been months ago or as recent as today, but you can’t stop thinking about it. When this happens, you are quick to call yourself incompetent, and you forget to praise yourself for all of the hard work you have put in. If you can’t accept that everyone makes mistakes, you won’t find it easy to forgive yourself for the mistakes you have made.

2. You Know Your Job

man looking at mobile
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It’s okay to feel insecure and incompetent from time to time, but you shouldn’t let it consume you. Feeling stupid while you are at work might mean different things to you and someone else, but you know your job, or you wouldn’t have been hired in the first place. According to Gill Corkindale on Harvard Business Review, this relates to the imposter syndrome, which is essentially a phase of insecurity many people and particularly managers go through at some point in their careers. So, when you feel incompetent or stupid, it doesn’t mean that you are. It’s just that sometimes your imposter syndrome gets in the way and blurs logic.

3. You Never Stop Learning

student writing in a exam
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J. B. Wood says that it’s okay to feel stupid sometimes because it helps you to learn and grow. In his article on High Calling, Wood refers to the ‘stages of learning’ which he believes can help people understand why they ‘feel stupid’ and incompetent. In psychological terms, the feeling that you get is called ‘conscious independence’ and describes a situation where you understand or know how to do something, though demonstrating the skill requires concentration and it needs to be broken down into steps for you to execute it.

4. You Are Being Hard on Yourself

woman beating herself up
Shutterstock

If you are feeling stupid at work, perhaps it means that you are being too hard on yourself. Being too much of a perfectionist won’t do you any good, considering that you will only end up putting more pressure on yourself. What you need to do is relax and accept that you can’t do everything at once. Revise the standards you have set for yourself and don’t be so self-critical. Take a step back, think about the good work you have done and the positive feedback you received from your boss and colleagues.

See Also: 6 Work Habits That Will Help You Get Ahead

Do you ever feel stupid at work? How do you cope with it? Let me know in the comments section below…

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