Fake It ‘Till You Make It

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Many have uttered this phrase when times get tough. There are times in our lives when we just aren’t sure how to keep moving forward when things are going to hell around us. This can be especially true in leadership. How often have you had one of those days when nothing is going right and you just want to yell at someone but you don’t, because as I have often told my 3 year old, throwing a tantrum and yelling at someone is no way to go through life!

In these instances, do we just paste a smiley face on and go with the flow? I have previously written about not panicking unless there is a really good reason to do so; but what about a day when your mojo is just off and you don’t feel like jumping up and saying yeah! It is really surprising how the mood of one person can impact the rest of the team. I once had a team member who was an extremely happy and positive person, someone who had a gift for putting the most miserable person in a good mood. Once, this person had a very bad day and her positive personality disappeared. The mood of the entire group mirrored her and soon, I had a group of nasty, whiny, complainers. This made me contemplate the way in which I approached a bad day. Knowing that others would follow my lead, I tried to be conscious of how I interacted with everyone.  If I could curtail my annoyance, no one would suspect I was having a bad day. I guess in a way I was faking it – pretending that all was well in order to preserve the positive attitude of everyone around me. In the end, this exercise actually helped me turn my negative mood around, just by acting positive I was able to block out the negative thoughts in my head.

How do you respond as a leader when dealing with a bad day? Do you fake it till you make it?

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