Day 23: Fake It Til You Make It

If only life were perfect right now. Wouldn’t that be great?

You wouldn’t ever have to worry about personal development or trying to do things that will make you happier, because you would already be as happy as possible!

Yeah, I guess that would be kind of cool.

The great thing is that even though technically that is impossible, we can pretend it’s true and actually feel better!

Here are a few ways you can “fake it til you make it”.


1. Smile.

This is a big one!

Believe it or not, smiling actually makes you happier.

I know, it’s weird. But if you are unhappy and you smile, you will actually feel happier.

Smiling releases endorphins and raises your serotonin (a neurotransmitter involved in regulating mood) levels.

Try to make it a habit to smile as often as possible.

I wouldn’t necessarily smile while unhappy, since suppressing emotions can have negative side effects.

That being said, any time you are in a neutral mood or even a happy mood, make sure you are smiling.

For more discussion on this topic, Scientific American has this interesting article, and for more reasons to smile check out this page.


2. Confident body language.

This is certainly related to the one above, but body language in general is a great thing to fake when you aren’t feeling so confident.

I’ve found this to be incredibly helpful for me. Typically when I’m not feeling confident, I get stuck in my head, with various anxieties swirling around and stealing my attention from what’s going on around me.

Instead of focusing on these negative thoughts, I put some of my attention on establishing a more confident body language, and suddenly I am much more present in the moment.

This surprising study sheds some more light on this (though it doesn’t entirely agree with me).

While there is an awful lot more to body language, I will focus only on two major aspects of it here: posture and space.

When we are unsure of ourselves, we tend to slouch over. A confident person, however, has a more upright posture with a the ears, shoulders, and hips aligned.

Bad vs. Good posture

Confident people also take up more space.

They don’t close themselves off from the world by doing things like crossing their arms or legs in front of their body.

Get used to keeping a wider stance while standing up and spreading your legs apart while sitting (for the fellas more so than the ladies). Sling your arm up over the chair next to you.

Basically, get comfortable.


3. Fake new beliefs.

This one deserves a bit of an explanation.

Your expression and body language are obvious, external things that someone else would immediately notice.

Faking new beliefs, however, is far more subtle. Everyone has limiting beliefs, and faking a new, replacement belief is a great way to change your mindset.

Beliefs are free, so it is in your best interest to choose beliefs that are most advantageous to you.

Let’s say you have a limiting belief that every time you take a risk, you fail.

Wouldn’t it be better to have the belief that whenever you take risks, you succeed (don’t take this too far…)?

For the next week, pretend like you believe the more useful belief, and look for evidence of it.

Every day, write down at least one thing that supports your faked new belief. Soon enough, you will have more than enough evidence, and the new belief will be programmed into your head!

I’m sure you can think of more ways to “fake it til you make it”, and I’d love to hear them.

Continue to Day 24: Are These Behaviors Sabotaging Your Relationships?

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