unsure, unhappy, unwell? act “as if” everything is ok

May 24th, 2010 by admin Leave a reply »
There are worse places to be sick than overlooking Vancouver's harbor

There are worse places to be sick than Vancouver

Act “as if.” This is great advice for working women, which I first heard from Jo Miller, a crackerjack executive leadership coach. For instance, if you act as if you’re a leader and see yourself in that role, in turn, colleagues will treat you accordingly.

The ubiquitous “how to be happy” articles always offer a variation of this strategy: Act happy, even if you don’t feel happy, and soon you will be happy.

The Friday before we left for vacation, Carter came home sniffling a little. A four-hour nap on Saturday cured him. Only five kids made it to daycare that Monday, the same day my throat started to get sore. Tuesday, I was home sick. Wednesday, we left for six days in Vancouver.

My strategy: Act as if I weren’t miserably sick.

It’s day 5 in Vancouver, and I wish I could report that I psyched myself into feeling better. I didn’t. I’ve gotten sicker every day. But I’d like to think that I complained less than usual. And despite being sick, I’ve had a great time away with my boys. (I don’t have to act as if I were happy, because I am—except about being sick.) Now, I’ll just have to act as if I’m not guilty of giving the daycare virus back to Carter as I dole out some more children’s ibuprofen.


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