Monday, November 9, 2009

Guest Post: Fake It Till You Make It

I first met Heidi when she was serving a full time mission for our church in Washington D.C. (specifically, Laurel, MD). After heading back home to Utah, she met a boy and married him... I can only assume he is as awesome as she is (look at that picture!). They are keeping busy shopping for their first home, playing Rock Band and obsessing over Harry Potter. Oh, and going to school full time and working full time. I have no idea when she found the time to write this post, but I sure am glad she did.

I've discovered that no one is really born lovely. People are born with wonderful gifts, talents and traits that help them develop towards becoming lovely, but we all have flaws and weaknesses. While I was growing up, my mom (who is so lovely) taught me to "fake it till you make it!" I can't recall the hundreds of times she said this phrase to me while I sat worrying before a performance, or grew nervous about a talk or a lesson I was giving, or whenever I was doing something that was obviously not a natural gift for me. Did your mom say it to you too? I find that I say it to myself all the time! Not just for performances or public speaking things anymore, but sometimes when I'm feeling down on myself. If I'm not so pleased with my appearance, I know attitude has a lot to do with how I feel and how others perceive me, so I say "fake it, girl! fake it till you make it." I love this phrase. It has helped define me. It is the thought that would go through my head before a jazz band gig in junior high or a drum solo in high school, a voice solo or a play or a lesson or anything. I fake confidence until I have it, and wonderfully enough, it happens. I think a lot of us do it, right? We fake confidence or being outgoing until we are.

Let me share an example. I served a mission for my church and when I got home, my whole life was naturally different. I no longer lived for the things I did before my mission and even the boy who was "waiting" for me was no longer what I expected from a best friend or lover. My whole world flipped in three months, and it was a low time for me. I didn't want a social life, I didn't fit in anywhere! I felt terribly rejected by this boy and by other friends. This old phrase of my mom's came back every day. I decided I had to fake being confident, fake being suave, fake a bit of loveliness, fake talents, fake everything until I had it all! In no time I was a social butterfly; I was surrounded by amazing friends, using new talents I had developed while faking them, and charming my then soon-to-be husband!

I definitely wasn't born with that confidence, and I still struggle with it all the time, but I do know how to overcome a challenge. I don't allow myself to use the excuse of not feeling up to it or feeling qualified for it or feeling good enough for whatever, because I know I can do anything! And there's no need to sit around and miss opportunities because I'm "learning." I'm learning and growing by faking it! And then, voila! I've made it.


Shanna said...

so glad your my sister

fidjiti said...

This is a great post. I'm glad you emphasized that you fake confidence and not so much a big wallet. LOL ;)
Cause I think if I applied that phrase to shopping, my hubby would not be so happy. My hubby has said this phrase in not so many words before. He said he learned it from his wise father. Told him if you don't know how to do something, fake it until you do. No one will know you can't do something unless you tell them, no one will know you don't know how to do something unless you tell them, so just keep it on the DL and don't tell them you've never done that before and fake it. Thanks for this post, I LOVED it and will use it!

Being Lovely said...

This is a great philosophy as long as it's done in the right way, and because different things work for different people I just want to add a little clarification.

We're all about being real here on the lovely blog, and we've often emphasized that you don't have to pretend to be better than you are--that you should accept and love yourself the way you are, without comparing yourself to other people or to your own irrational expectations. That said, this phrase can be a great way to talk yourself into trying new things, and can help you gain confidence about your abilities. Just make sure that the attitude behind it is healthy!