On this show...we aren’t accepting cheesy smiles, phony laughs, or the ever so popular response, “I’m fine”. Faking happy just takes too much work! Instead of faking it until you make it - let’s try and understand what “it” really is. And how do you know when you’ve arrived at “it” so you can wipe that silly look off your face? If being nice is easier than being nasty and smiling takes less effort than frowning, doesn’t it stand to reason that BEING happy is more rewarding than faking it? Ok, let’s go with that!
So we’ve all been guilty of faking it a time or two, right? You’re in an uncomfortable situation and need to create the illusion that you are having a good time or are totally relaxed. You might have some co-workers that grate on your last never yet it’s better to hide your distaste and soldier on. This too shall pass right?
Fake A Smile?
Fake an Affirmation?
Fake Being Outgoing?
Some people might be good at “faking it” so instead of reaching out, you might think, “Nah - they seem to have it all together” when in reality, they are struggling.
With social media being so widely used for communication and to chronicle our day-to-day - posting and saying only what we want people to perceive has become a trend. The best we have to offer or radically posting cryptic messages of distress. It’s so hard to uncover what is real and what is fake.
Telltale Sign #1: Giant Mood Swings Are a Normal Thing for You
Telltale Sign #2: You're Tired All the Time
Telltale Sign #3: You're Trying Too Hard to Show Others How Great Your Life Is
Telltale Sign #4: You're Totally Isolated from Others
Telltale Sign #5: You're Abusing Alcohol or Other Substances
I’m guessing you shouldn’t leave it up to chance and instead - just try and connect with everyone you encounter in some positive way. This could be from making eye contact with someone at the grocery to asking someone how their day is going to physically going out of your way to assist someone - anyone.
Reaching out with a kind sentiment even if someone is actually doing well is ok too - you don’t have to just look for people in need to help. Think about exercising this muscle by making connections, exuding positive energy, and encouraging everyone daily. People will remember the way you made them feel, crave to be around you, and be inspired to pass that feeling along.
Remember, we are no longer faking it but cultivating it.
Over at the helpguide.com we learn all about how Cultivate Happiness from Authors: Melinda Smith, M.A. and Jeanne Segal, Ph.D.
Just a sample:
Myth: Money will make you happy.
Fact: It’s stressful when you’re worried about money. In order to be happy, you do need enough of it to cover your basic needs: things like food, shelter, and clothing. But once you have enough money to be comfortable, getting more money isn’t going to make much of a difference in how happy you are. For example, studies of lottery winners show that after a relatively short period of time, they are no happier than they were before their win.
- Train your brain to be more positive
- Express gratitude
- Keep a gratitude journal
- Count your blessings
- Write a letter of gratitude
Nurture and enjoy your relationships
Make a conscious effort to stay connected
Invest in quality time with the people you care about
Offer sincere compliments
Seek out happy people
Take delight in the good fortune of others
Easy enough? Never as easy as it should be but part of the joy in self-discovery is learning what you are capable of. New ideas, strategies, and experiences are what shape us as we grow. Evolving is about embracing new and letting go of old and it’s continual. I hope you find joy in the journey.
CHALLENGE: before you plaster on the fake smile and buck up to endure the next uncomfortable situation, make a promise to yourself to squelch the sham and find ways to elicit true happiness and joy. Both of which deserve more than just a temporary appearance in your life but a cherished and ongoing role.
I Know YOU Can Do It!