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Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Can you Really Fake it Until you Make it?


We have two dogs that we had before we were married, one is my husband's, the other mine. Somewhere along the way I decided that I did not much like my husband's dog. I thought he was lazy, only cared about food, not as smart as my dog and chewed up some valuable items, etc, etc.

I realized one day a few years back how ridiculous it was to not like a dog. He's just a dog after all. Yet over the years I have not been as sweet to him and wasted energy thinking negatively about him. The other night, I made a decision to fake liking my husband’s dog. I walked up to him and petted him vigorously and talked excitedly. 

Funny thing was, it took only a few minutes and I actually felt it more genuinely toward the end, I was not faking nearly as much. I really felt closer to that dog.

Then, I thought. Maybe I can apply this to my happiness practice. You have said to fake it even when you don't feel it. That has proven a challenge for me. Now that I see it can work on some level. I am going to keep trying it on myself. Lying to my brain to achieve a better mood. Wish me luck :) Am I fooling myself? Do you think it will work?


I do wish you luck and of course it will work. You are certainly headed in the right direction. It's a true tenet of cognitive behavioral therapy "fake it until you make it."  But the "make it" doesn’t really refer to behavior, it really refers to making the proper neural patterns in your brain so they will later be available for your use.

So you are not really lying to your brain. You are simply insisting on your own on-purpose, pro-active behavior instead of reactive behavior based on old patterns of thinking which your brain pops up on its own. 

And you are actually changing your brain because you are making new neural patterns about liking instead of disliking. We like the things that we invest our interest in.

We dislike accidentally based on fear. We can like what we formerly disliked on purpose based on our own loving energy which is given us by our Creator..
A. B. Curtiss

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