✅ Fake It Till You Make It: The RIGHT Way To Do It

fake it till you make it , girl in the sun

You’ve probably heard of the saying, “Fake It Till You Make It“. They say pretending something is “real” and “present” in your life will make it true over time. Is it true? Is it not?

It is one of those things that we hear a lot, alongside other motivational quotes like “Time is Gold“, or “Nobody’s Perfect“.

You get what I mean right? Its a little sad to say, but it really is kind of cliche.

But disregarding that, this saying “Fake It Till You Make It” can actually be very useful in your life. How?

By utilizing it to improve yourself, for self-improvement. Actually, almost everything can be used to better yourself, even the “bad” things, if you harness it the right way.

This “Fake It Till You Make It”, who said it? 🗣️

Great question. I was also very curious about the quote’s origin, so I looked into it.

Off-topic, but have you ever dreamed of coming up with a particular saying or quote, then it going viral?

So you’ll see it everywhere and have your name credited below it. Just me? Okay then. Back to the topic.

Who came up with this particular quote?

Drum roll

It’s Robert K. Merton!

So fun right? I know. (Boo! Lame.)

Let’s first give Mr. Merton the credit he deserves.

“Fake It ‘Till You Make It”

Robert K. Merton (1910-2003), Sociologist


Several other sources also state that this great man coined the phrase, “Fake It Till You Make It”.
Also, in some articles, they say his name last name is “Murton”, but Wikipedia otherwise says it’s “Merton“. I decided to side with Wikipedia (sorry, other articles!)

But, the origins of the saying is also not very clear and not very sure, so take this information with a grain of salt.

“Fake It Till You Make It” in a nutshell 🥜

Simply put, it means to pretend you are a particular something, even though you know yourself you are currently not that now,

believing that eventually, you really WILL BECOME that something.

Example goals of people who implement this 📝

  • To be more confident
  • For self-improvement
  • To learn or possess new personality traits
  • To be happier

How does “Fake It Till You Make It” work? 🤔

fake it till you make it, wooden doll

In my opinion and based on what I have researched, faking it till you make it works by tricking your brain and its subconscious (sort of) into thinking that something is real,

by constantly telling it something is true and over time, it will believe that. So basically, you are brainwashing yourself (Haha!), in a good way, of course.

When is it considered a bad thing? ❌

The faking-it concept can possibly be a bad thing if you find yourself lying.

Lying is rarely good (well, unless you are held at gunpoint, that is definitely a different story.)

(Dang, that was grim.)

It is a little understandable that some people get confused and think that they need to lie as well because lying and pretending are quite related.

If you do find yourself lying 🤥

Lying would definitely just result in bad things such as others distrusting you, getting exhausted (keeping up with lies can be quite difficult),

and it may also result in depletion of your self-worth (because you might gradually fail to see yourself as a good person), and we don’t want that.

For example:

Wanting to feel more confident, you tried this “Fake It Till You Make It” strategy, but you did something wrong.

You lied.

About what?

You lied about being very rich, even though you are not.

To prevent getting busted, you spent extreme sums of money to “prove” certain people that you are indeed “rich”.

It was going well at first but unfortunately, money is not infinite and after a while, you’re broke.
Now you don’t have any more money to keep lying and you thought it can’t get any worse?

Wrong. Turns out the people you are trying to please are actually fake friends. After finding out the truth, they ditched you. Awful.

Now, you don’t have money, and “friends” too. The plot is very movie-like isn’t it?

My point is, it’s usually best just to be honest all the time, to attract the right kind of people in your life, the genuine ones, the ones who really love you for who you really are.

Some people associate the saying with the act of telling lies, which is certainly not what the author is trying to imply.

Doing it to please others 🙇

Another bad thing to do while implementing this is doing it for others, and not for yourself alone. Like the above, this is never good, especially for your self-esteem and mental health.

Pleasing others, in general, is a very unhealthy habit because if you do excessively, your sense of self-worth might become dependent on them.

That is terrible because what would happen if they are not there anymore? Your self-worth would probably deteriorate. Yikes.

This is why you should depend only on yourself when it comes to feeling worthy. That way, the chance of you breaking down would probably be decreased by like, 200%.

The RIGHT way of faking it ✔️

dancing girl

One great way to prevent problems while implementing the saying “Fake It Till You Make It” in your life is by doing this very one thing.

That is, to make it an internal thing.

What do I exactly mean by that?

That means, the pretending you’ll do, keep it to yourself, only. Like a secret.

This way, you’ll probably be able to exercise it better.

It works best for “personality tweaks” 🔧

The concept of faking it works best when used for “personality tweaks” or essentially, changing aspects of your personality.

Like, let’s say you are very shy, you can use this technique to be more confident. That would probably work in the end, so that’s good.

Now, if you were to utilize this to pretend you excel at a particular skill, like for instance, playing basketball.

You tell people, “Yeah, I’m like so good at playing basketball.”, then you guys go play and you end up just embarrassing yourself, and now they know you’re a liar.

That is an example of the wrong way to apply the faking-it technique.

Think of it as a boost or a jump-start 🚀

A boost? For What? What do you mean?

If you are “faking it”, you are probably doing it to eventually be something you are currently not right now.

What I suggest you do is to think of it as the first step you take towards that goal, maybe even a jump-start.

The pretending is only half the job 🌗

You can’t simply pretend and change just like that, right?

Something needs to be done, and that is work.

Barely anything in life is achievable without putting some, or a lot of effort into it.

Now that you have accomplished half the job, which is faking, the other half basically, is working to achieve your goal.

Step-by-step on how to fake it right 👣

workplace , flatlay

#1: Determine what you want to achieve 🏅

Do you want to be more confident? Perhaps, you want to be friendlier? There are endless possibilities. Dive deep within you and determine what you want to change for yourself.

#2: Determine the steps you need to take towards that goal 🖊️

There are two ways to do this: The research method and the role-model/friend method.

The Research Method 🔎

The research method, you can try researching guides online on how to do that specific goal. You can simply type, “How to be more confident” or “How to have a more positive attitude”. It depends on what you’re going for.

You can also look into TED talks, they are really nice and it feels personal (in a nice way).

In our current generation, you can find almost anything with just a simple tap on that search button.

The Role-Model/Friend Method 👯‍♀️

This method is better than the previous one because you can actively observe, see how others do it. This makes it a little easier for you.

You can either have a role model (you don’t even need to know them personally), like a celebrity, or a Youtuber. It is possible to observe them without them even knowing (a little stalker-like isn’t it? Just kidding).

You can also consider your friend or someone you know that possesses the qualities you want to have, as reference.

Simply observe things they do that you don’t, and try to do it too. But be careful, don’t forget to still be your real self, you wouldn’t want the impostor syndrome happening to you.

Incorporate the things or traits that your “test subject” has, only if you feel like doing so and if you think it will help you reach your goal.

#3: Self-check on the qualities you lack 📋

Now that you have researched or have someone to use as a reference, you’re ready for the next step, and that is self-assessment.

Examine yourself and be completely honest (or you’ll just be lying to yourself) on which aspects you need to be working on.

#4: Here comes the “fake it” part 🎭

This is the part we do the fun (is it?) part, the faking. We simply pretend we are already that something we want to be, and I think this works more as a boost towards your objective, as I have said previously.

#5: Do the other half, aka work for it 🧗‍♂️

After observing and determining the things you currently lack, now is the time to start taking the steps and try to integrate those qualities in yourself.

#6: Have patience and be gentle with yourself 😊

You are making life changes so for sure, that won’t be very easy. You will be bound to make mistakes, that’s okay, we all do, so don’t be so harsh on yourself.

Experiencing failures means you’re actually doing it right, that means you are going out of your comfort zone.

Making mistakes is inevitable when learning something new, and it means we are getting closer to our goal, to be better at something.

#7: You will eventually get there, BELIEVE 🌠

This is very essential too, as well. Have faith in yourself. Out of everyone here in this world, or galaxy, your biggest supporter should be YOU.

You should always have your own back. That way, you’ll be invincible.

Freebies, yay! 🎉

flowers in hand

There is a high chance that you are doing the faking for be-more-confident or happiness purposes, so I compiled somethings that can help you do that.

Tricking your brain 😵

Forcing a smile (say cheese!) 😬

It is scientifically proven that forcing yourself to smile does indeed make you happier.

Improve your body posture and body language 🧘

Like the above, having good posture and body language does affect our mood more than we think.

Dress up exactly how you want 👗

You don’t really need to follow trends to look good, besides, it’s very exhausting to always keep up with the trends.

If you do like following fashion trends, that’s absolutely okay too. What I mean is, just dress however the freak you want,as long as you really like what you wear, you’re good.

Listen to happy music 🎧

Some psychology studies prove listening to happy, upbeat music does help uplift your mood. On the other hand,listening to sad ones brings up bad memories instead.

I am not forcing you though, we all have our own preferences. If you like sad music more, I say go for it!

Smile at yourself in the mirror 🤡

This one is a little weird, I know, but it works!

Exercise 🏋️

Your choice on how you do it: Dancing? Yoga? Jogging? Going to the gym?

As long as you get some sweats, you’re good to go.

According to this article, exercising releases endorphins, aka the-happy-hormones.

Eat healthily 🥗

Eating healthy and just being healthy in general makes you happier. You can also consider looking into the so-called Japanese Water Therapy, it is very good for your health too.

Going out of your comfort zone 😨

Scary as it sounds, to improve and be better, we really do need to get out of our safe havens, our comfort zones.

It really is terrifying at first, but it would definitely be worth it in the end.

Conclusion 🦄

Does it work? ☑️

In my opinion, YES!, It does work if you utilize it right. I can prove this because I have done it myself.

I have been very, very shy before and I did the steps I previously said and it worked for me. Not saying that I am like super-duper confident now, but it got much better.

Try them out, hopefully, they work for you guys too.

That is all, and I wish you the best in your Fake-It-Till-You-Make-It journey!

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