Overcoming Imposter Syndrome: My Path to Belonging

Alice Tang
inspiring, compelling, energetic financial advising expert

Feeling like you don’t belong can be a challenging barrier to overcome in life, slowing growth and robbing you of your true potential. This sense of isolation often breeds self-doubt, attributing success to luck rather than merit. Many wrestle with these feelings, fearing exposure as inadequate or unworthy.

My Journey with Belonging

My journey with belonging began early in life. Thanks to my mother’s connections, I attended a prestigious all-girls school. Despite being accepted, I never quite felt at home. I wasn’t one of the rich kids or a talented athlete, often feeling like a wallflower among stars. Constantly trying to fit in was exhausting, and despite occasional academic achievements, I struggled with a sense of not measuring up. Eventually, I had to leave, learning that closed doors sometimes lead to unexpected opportunities.

Transitioning to a different school felt like hitting a reset button. Surrounded by supportive friends who accepted me for who I was, I thrived academically and personally. It was liberating to no longer have to strive to feel like I belonged. 

Transition and Belonging in a New Country

Years later, moving to the US presented new challenges. Unable to work initially due to visa restrictions, I grappled once again with feelings of not belonging. But, through developing new connections and friendships, I slowly found my place and adapted to my new environment.

Professional Journey

Imposter syndrome resurfaced again when I was offered a role in wealth management. Despite doubts about my capabilities, with the encouragement of my support network, I took the leap after nearly a year of putting it off. Trusting that I belonged in the new role I was taking on marked a significant turning point in my career.

Connecting and Helping Others Belong

Today, I’m attuned to those who feel left out. In group settings, I prioritize reaching out to those on the outskirts, finding common ground, and connecting them with like-minded individuals. Facilitating a sense of belonging for others strengthens my own sense of purpose.

Moving Forward

Belonging is a journey, not a destination. Overcoming feelings of inadequacy involves acknowledging and reframing negative thoughts, supported by a nurturing network. For women especially, dispelling these doubts is crucial for personal and professional advancement.

Embracing belonging enriches our lives immeasurably. By extending a hand to others, we reinforce our own sense of community and support.

Let’s continue building inclusive environments where everyone can thrive. Remember, the greatest achievements often stem from feeling supported and valued. I am grateful to those who supported me on my journey and are eager to pay it forward.

Next time you’re in a meeting, networking event, or even a casual gathering, look out for someone who seems out of place. Take a moment to introduce yourself, initiate a conversation, and connect them with others with similar interests or goals. Your outreach could be the turning point they need to feel included and valued.


About Alice Tang

Alice Tang, ChFC® is a Financial Advisor, Speaker and Educator. As an immigrant to the United States, Alice faced the reality of starting a career from scratch, forcing herself to become self-reliant. Self- discovery became her life-calling, and she has since made a name for herself as Financial Advisor, Speaker and Mentor, led to inspiring others, especially women, to be courageous, confident and successful.

“Step into your power courageously. Your deepened relationship = Your Wealth.” – Alice Tang

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