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Sunday, July 2, 2023

Feigned Vs Genuine Moods

Is putting up an act the right thing to do? Is it even the proper thing to do, that shows that you have manners? Is it at least convenient?

Feigning can get you by but being genuine gets you aligned and connected. It rids you of your loneliness and isolation, of the walls you’ve put around you to not be vulnerable, to not be seen as imperfect. It comes with its risks and downsides. So, many people choose to feign instead, in a variety of situations, sometimes most of the time. To the point where they forget who they truly are, what they truly like, and how they truly behave. Rather than allowing themselves to be free to be themselves.

Feigning moods can be practical and effective. It can get you far. However, as good of an actor as you believe you are and as much as you believe that you are fooling everyone, that won’t be quite the case. There will be people who notice, there will be people who sense something off about you, there will be people who will not see you as making sense because they know how humans function, how their inner workings go, and things just aren’t adding up with you. So, you can feign your moods. But if you believe that you’re doing a flawless job at it, you’re probably wrong.

Feigning is fine when you’re in character. When you’re playing a role. When you’re not exactly betraying the trust of someone or of anyone, but you’re doing something that is required of you and is therefore understandable and you can be excused and justified. But taking up feigning as a habit, as a default mode of operating - with colleagues, friends, family, or even significant others - it is a recipe for destruction, for self-sabotage. And for living miserably when it comes to the social dimension of life.

There is something called the uncanny valley and that is something that causes a weird sensation we get, a strange feeling creeping us out, when something is too close to reality but not quite there yet. And that is what happens when you fake your states unless you are an outstanding, extraordinary, excellent actor. There will be things about your performance that will show that it is, in fact, a performance. Especially if it is only skin deep.

So, what is recommendable is to be genuine. It doesn’t mean that you have to bring all of your personal stuff to the table all the time, but you can choose to be sincere about it. And if your moods are not suitable for a situation or they are harmful or inappropriate in some way, then you can put them on hold. Besides this, it is an option to find it in yourself to generate moods that more appropriately go with what is happening - so you’re not feigning, you’re conjuring them up and truly experiencing them.

For example, a person gives you a present and you’re indifferent about it. You could feign gratitude or you could look within yourself for appreciation and then emanate sincere gratitude. You can do something like this with almost everything. Smiling for shoots. Think of happy thoughts, remember happy moments, anything that will get you genuinely happy. So that when you smile, you smile like you mean it - because you do.

Yet, that does come with a cost. As described before, feigning is the convenient way to go in certain cases. Conjuring up genuine feelings when they are not the default or the immediate ones that you have is an extra step, an extra process, that you have to do and it can be draining - at times more so than putting up an act - or it can make you lag behind to some extent. But the more you practice, the more you master your emotions, accessing and regulating them, and it becomes easier and even natural eventually.

Nevertheless, you will have to be rested enough so that you will have the energy necessary to manifest these moods at will.