“Sometimes I feel like a fake and a fraud, and I’m so tired of this Fake it ’til you make it existence”.
I’d like to say I felt shocked when I heard those words come out of the mouth of a well-respected international best selling author, and someone that most of us would regard as a runaway success.
But I wasn’t shocked, in fact, it made me smile. And obviously not a little smile, because she immediately asked…
“What on earth are you grinning about?”
This is what I shared with her, that by the end of the conversation had her grinning too.
Feeling a fake or a fraud is common experience. It often stems from the difficulty we have in recognising our own value, poor self-esteem or self-worth, and our tendency to compare ourselves to others. Just to name a few.
But feeling as though you’re perpetually in a state of faking it ’til you make it is predominantly driven by your Energy type.
Specifically, it’s relationship with time and how we see ourselves.
This is how it works.
Certain Energy types like dominant Wood and Fire types are always looking forward to the future, often with big dreams and aspirations.
Whereas Earth, Water and Metal types are either in the here and now, in the past, or when they are thinking about the future, it’s often less idealistic and more aligned with the current sense of themselves.
So Wood and Fire types tend to be in a perpetual state of This is how I want to be, and not This is how I am.
And that’s where the fake it ’til you make it feelings and behaviours come from. Wood and Fire Energy types true sense of themselves is always at odds with their aspirations and how they want to be seen.
When I shared that with her she said,
“Ok, I get it!”
“Because I’m an even mix between Wood and Fire Energy, that means I’m living with how I want to be”
“When I started blogging, I dreamed of having a big audience, but in reality it was my Mum and my sister. That’s interesting.”
“I clearly remember thinking I have to Fake it ’til you make it as a strategy to get me over that hump.”
“So that’s what I did, and it worked out well. I now have 1,000’s and 1,000’s of people reading every post”
“Then when I had an audience for my blog, but didn’t have mega email list, I felt a fraud and had to fake it because I was sharing the stage with all the big names who were titans in that area. And again acting and Faking it ’til I made it got me through.”
“Then when I had a big email list and massive following, up there with the greats, I knew I didn’t have a Best Selling Book. So I did the ultimate Fake it ’til you make it and put up a notice about my soon to be launched book. And wow was that an uncomfortable Fake it ’til you make it!”
“And now I have an international best seller, I’m feeling a fraud because I’m dreaming of… fill in the blanks”
“So if I’d stuck with the original vision of myself as a successful blogger, I’d be fine and I wouldn’t feel a fraud.
“The problem is my reality is always trying to catch up with my aspirations, and my response to that is feeling a fraud, and going with the Fake it ’til you make it strategy.”
“No wonder I’m tired of it, it’s a never ending cycle!”
And it was at that point she started grinning.
Internally, and to a certain extent externally, Fake it ’til you make it is a perfectly reasonable strategy to get you to the next level.
Acting a certain way can give you confidence, and get you through.
But it does come at a cost to your self-esteem because you never really appreciate who you are, and if you’re banking on the fact that at some point you’ll no longer feel a fraud, you may be disappointed!
So see fake it ’til you make it for what it is, a coping strategy that’s a response to you Energy Type, and not as a reason to feel bad, or beat yourself up.
If you don’t know your Energy type, take the The Vitality Test.
It’s free, simple and easy to do.