“Faking It Until You Make It” Is Never Really Fake

Since adjusting to our new normal, you might have found yourself experiencing feelings of disconnect or insincerity during your online meetings. This adjustment may be causing you great frustration and even a lack of motivation. Today, you likely believe that your options are reduced to either attending online meetings or not attending online meetings.

Certainly, the ladder would provide the least amount of help for your recovery, so online seems to be the best way to go. You might be new to recovery or you might have been attending recovery meetings for a year or more. Still, despite this, you can’t find a way to connect.

If you are not taking to these changes as quickly as you’d like, have you considered faking it until you make it? You might have heard this expression before, but what does it mean? How can it help you — and how does it apply to your recovery?

Fake It Until You Make It

“Fake it until you make it” is a common expression used by many when referencing how they go about finding success. The idea of “fake” is somewhat disarming and takes the pressure off. However, some do misunderstand this philosophy to mean pretending or participating in a non-committal way, i.e. that you do not need to actually do the work. However, it’s the exact opposite.

Faking it until you make it is a philosophy founded on commitment — a commitment that you will participate to the best of your abilities until you begin to establish a connection with the process. The “faking it” idea is just the notion that your disconnect is only temporary while you build confidence to start discovering meaning in the process, the program, and in this case, utilizing the benefits of online, text, or telephone meetings.

When Fake Becomes Real

This philosophy is built on the idea of forming habits. When you allow yourself to be willing to take the chance and do this consistently, you will begin to unravel bad thoughts and habits to form healthier ones. Eventually, your willingness will become real. You might believe that motivation comes before the action, but often it is the opposite — motivation follows action.

It takes time to adjust to new ideas and practices that will be beneficial for your alcohol or drug addiction, and this is okay, as long as you choose to commit instead of avoiding. There is nothing fake about this approach. You are simply building confidence, motivation, and momentum before embracing the idea, rather than beginning with the idea as the thing that enacts the commitment. This takes trusting yourself and trusting the process.

Be Selective

The attitude of faking it until you make it should not apply to all facets of your daily life. There are certainly plenty of activities you enjoy without needing to “fake it,” so don’t do it when you don’t have to. Instead, there needs to be a context for faking — for example, consider your online recovery program.

Faking interest in wanting to be there will allow you the courage to keep attending until you want to be there. It’s the same when listening to others share their stories, especially those who have longevity. Listening to them could help bring courage and understanding into these meetings. In the right context, the idea of faking should be used as a mantra: I am going to go to my meeting and I want to be there.

See Your Success

Visualize your success. Fill your mind with thoughts of achieving a new mental attitude and having a successful recovery. Focus on these positive thoughts until they manifest. Many do find success when they visualize it first — when you visualize your success, your brain is creating a map for you to go about achieving it. It does this by developing neural pathways to find ways to allow the visual to transform into a tangible act.

For example, when you visualize yourself enjoying a meeting, making friends, and carrying those friendships outside of the program, this consistent form of thinking will eventually become truth, and you will be living the visualization. Positive affirmation and visualization is a tool that you can use at any point in your recovery to help you manifest the life you want.

Never Really Faking

Once you decide to go through the motions and at least commit to participating, science suggests that you will begin to develop genuine feelings. The “faking it” aspect will only be temporary — and as long as you choose sobriety and well-being, you are never really faking anything. You still need the determination to want to get better, and this determination should help you endure and adjust to any situation.

The new normal of having so many online interactions right now might seem fruitless, but use this philosophy, give it a try, and make the most of it. Online meetings offer the ability to stay connected more often throughout the day and 24/7 chat rooms offer camaraderie to meet the challenges often faced in addiction recovery, such as isolation, loneliness, and destructive thoughts. Even if others drop out, seek those who want to keep going and build a network and keep in touch with them. Your persistence will not only motivate you, but it will likely motivate others.

If you are finding it hard to even fake commitment and are separating yourself from people and practices that focus on recovery, it’s time to get help. True Recovery offers 24/7 care and is founded on the philosophy of using alternative methods to achieve sobriety. We believe that the road to recovery differs for every individual, and we are determined to find the right care for you. Whether you need help faking it, or just a little direction to get you started, True Recovery can help. To learn more, call us today at (866) 399-6528.