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Faking it is not making it.

Webster’s dictionary defines confidence as “a feeling or consciousness of one's powers or of reliance on one's circumstances,” which to me is a pretty wholesome explanation of the feeling that I get when I hear the word confidence. Yet we have all, at some point in our life, been in a place where we were not sure of our power or of our circumstances. What we often do in such cases is fake confidence, we fake it ‘til we make it, or at least we think we make it.

Ever wonder if you really made it, while faking it?

I think the answer to that question is, you can never make it while faking it.

You can’t pass a course if you keep lying to yourself that you know everything—you actually need to work on it to know whether you know your course or not. You cannot be in a relationship by faking your feelings. That can be devastating to both you and your partner. You cannot fake liking someone you see everyday. It is exhausting and unfair to both of the parties involved.

A recent post on a confessions page made me think about all the things that I am faking at the moment because I am confused about my feelings or confused by the situation and for how long I had been faking confidence in those things.

If nothing works when we fake our feelings, then why do we fake confidence almost everyday in our lives and think that a different outcome will result? Why do we think that faking confidence will get us what we want? That it will allow us to effectively deal with a situation? Why do we think that confusion is not a good trait?

I have one word for it—comfort. We have grown up in an environment where everyone around us seems to be confident always and all the time. Confusion puts us in an uncomfortable area whereas confidence gives us a sense of comfort in our actions and ourselves. When we face a situation we are not confident about, our first instinct is to find comfort in ourselves and then face whatever is in front of us.

Don’t get me wrong. My one advice to everyone out there is to do whatever you are comfortable with, the world will find a way to be okay with that! But this is where people forget that something fake can never compare to the real thing.

We have become so used to faking confidence that we forgot that having real confidence in a situation can work wonders.

Ask yourself this question: When was the last time you faked being confident and when did that fake confidence turn into real confidence because you put in the extra effort to become familiar with all possible facts or information?

If you keep wondering for the next 24 hours, it is probably time to re-evaluate the situation and work to improve yourself. This might push you out of your comfort zone, so do it at a time when you feel ready. Do it not because you see others doing it, or because you feel pressured into doing it, but because you WANT to do it.

In her article, When to Fake It Till You Make It (and When You Shouldn't), Amy Morin talks about the effects that ‘faking it’ can have on us, both positive and negative. She also talks about the right ways to ‘fake it’. This article gives us an insight as to how we can distinguish what we are faking and what we really feel. It can be the first step towards making the transition from fake to real.

It’s time to consider the less popular message of “fake it, ‘til you make it”— fake it ‘til you are confident and comfortable enough to turn it into the real thing. Everyone works on their own timeline and a saying must never put constrictions on any soul out there. But you should always try to strive for the real thing because it will always be better than the fake one. It will be worth the effort.


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Shefali Bhatt

Western '20

Shefali is a third-year student pursuing honors specialization in Animal Behavior with a certificate in digital communication. She loves almost everything in the world but traveling, adventure and writing about her thoughts and experiences is the closest to her heart.
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