I’ve always known the old and resurrected saying ‘Fake it till you make it’. I used to use it a lot back in my days as a waitress. Having to deal with people in any sort of fashion can quickly make someone understand this concept. I remember being less than enthusiastic at the thought of forced pleasantries as I was trying to take someone’s order.
I was younger and more introverted in those days. Most people were nice, but there were the occasional rude people. Probably unhappy in their own lives and unknowingly taking it out on the sweet person trying to bring them a delicious calzone.
You’d also get those guys that liked to use the dining experience to try out their new material for trying to catch the ladies. That required a whole different type of acting. How can I pretend I’m not crawling out of my skin uncomfortable as you leer at me and compliment me, all while I’m looking down at a wedding ring on your finger (Lucky spouse you have). People never cease to amaze me. I guess that’s where the acting bug hits everyone. I thought I’d left that fakery behind, but I realize that I have to ‘act’ all day long in one way or another.
While I’m with my boss and I get a call that the loan for my new business didn’t go through—act like everything is fine and get back to business. While talking with my son about frustrating things that may have to do with the church. I’m trying to help him see the amazing gift of having faith but if I say the wrong thing about God or church or Faith, it could leave an unnecessarily bad taste in his impressionable mouth. Acting, editing, thoughtful conversation.
While talking to my sister about loaning me money for my new business (reason, see above); all she wants to do is tell me to see my Therapist and go on medication. I have to act like it isn’t causing me damage, that’s where stopping the conversation comes in. (See chapter on ‘To engage or not engage’)
When a friend texts me that our friend’s surgery went well and I’m so happy and thankful that I start to cry, I have to make sure I’m not too ‘cry-ee’, otherwise, people might think I’m having another manic episode. When I’m ridiculously happy because I got accepted into a writing program, I better not be too happy or too emotional.
I think that for most people, acting has become second nature. Maybe even to the point that a lot of people aren’t even sure what role they’re playing. Sadly, I don’t think they even know the beauty that they get to CHOOSE what part they play. That’s the amazing thing that I’ve discovered. I get to be who I am and what I am, when and where I want. God is my director but maybe for you, your director is your spouse, or your kids, or your boss, or your Dog, the Universe, or Russian hackers. The point is, make sure you’re taking direction from someone or something that is a positive force in your life (not Russian hackers). There is so much negativity everywhere, but we get to decide if we let any of it in.