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Act as if.This is an often used prescription given by therapists and coaches to help people lower anxiety and depression, or boost self esteem and confidence
The idea is to adopt a posture that we don't quite yet believe. Just pretend, just act as if
you're good enough
you're talented enough
everything will be fine
nothing bad will happen
no one will notice the zit on your nose
and so on. And it works -- as long as we're willing to suspend disbelief and self-judgment. That is, as long as we're willing to allow the possibility that maybe what we think isn't really true.
The purpose of the Pretending All is Goodor act as if exercise is to give ourselves the chance to find out that what we have been telling ourselves was never true in the first place.
And by acting as if we believe it's not true now -- and paying attention to what happens and how we feel -- we can collect the direct experiential evidence that makes a convincing argument for letting go of faulty beliefs.
There can be a downside to this strategy, however. Pretending all is good all the time has another name in the therapy world -- it's called being in denial of the truth.
Being in denial can be a problem if it perpetuates disappointment, or conflict with others, or leads you into making unwise decisions. In psychological terms it may even be considered a warning sign indicating mental delusions and other diagnostic issues.
But the more usual problem is that we just get tired of keeping up a happy face when we're feeling unappreciated, unnoticed, and unfulfilled.
Maybe that's when acting as if it's ok to let others see that you're unhappy will actually help.
Not quite sure when acting as if is appropriate? Schedule a free 20 minute consult now and I'll help you determine that