Fake it till you make it Karla ONeill

Did you ever ask yourself why there are so many images and phrases of inspiration out there? How many of you have inspirational quotes, poems or prayers posted on your walls at home? As part of this gang, we see them, post them, respond to them with smiley faces, hearts, thumbs up. We repost them on our walls with our own little upbeat message. We thank the poster for knowing what our heart needed just that very moment. Why are there so many of them?

Did you know we have 12,000-60,000 thoughts that run through our head every single day? Some research shows that as many as 98% of our thoughts are exactly the same as we had the day before with 80% of those thoughts being negative. Scary huh?

Years ago, when Facebook started, my mother often asked me why I posted such positive stuff all the time when my life wasn’t what I was posting. She was right – it wasn’t positive at all. I had been through my first divorce followed by a failed relationship that ended when he tried to take my life and now I was in another failing marriage that also ended in divorce due to his severe alcoholism. All I could tell her was ‘you are right mom – it’s not good now – but it will be. I have to fake it till I make it. If I think positive, my life will be positive.’ I had just been introduced to the book by Rhonda Byrne – ‘ The Secret’ and this changed my life forever.

The Secret teaches us about the Law of Attraction – what you think about, you bring about so if you think positive things – good and positive things happen to you. Likewise, if you think negative things or of failing, you will get negative and you will fail. I see it every single day in my life and those around me. Do we pray for negative things to happen to us? No, we pray for healing, good health, happiness, etc.

If I hadn’t changed how I looked at life, I’d still be married to that alcoholic who did everything he could to suck the life out of me. The only friends I had I made through my PartyLite business. Today – they are some of the best relationships I’ve every had – true friends who also faked it until they made it and had that attitude of gratitude and shared it with me. That business – that home party plan was ‘My Get Out of Jail Free Card’. I was also working as a Correctional Officer in a men’s prison and I was going to make this home party plan thing work so I could quit that job with such a negative environment. It didn’t quite work that way for me but that’s another story.

So why do we let all those negative thoughts happen? Why do we dwell on the one negative or bad thing that happened to us when we are blessed with so many good things each and every day? How do we stop those negative thoughts from taking over our daily lives? What do we do to keep happy, positive thoughts running through our brain and into the veins of our lives? What steps do you take to erase those negative thoughts and replace them with happy thoughts? How do we ensure we always have an attitude of gratitude?

We all have different methods and I’m encouraging you to share how you kick out those nasty Negative Nelly thoughts and replace them with Positive Polly thoughts. One of mine is remembering that “You’re the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” by Jim Rohn. If I am spending time with Negative Nelly’s – most likely I will have lots of negative thoughts and life will be unhappy. It only makes sense of the time spent with Positive Pollys. If we want to be smarter, we spend time with smart people. If we want to be happy, we spend time with happy people. If we want to learn to dance, we gather with dancers and so on.

Another is prayer. Pray. Pray for yourself and for others – even those that don’t want it or who have hurt you. When you change your thoughts from anger or hurt toward that person to prayer for them, you are changing negative thoughts to positive thoughts. Of course, this is a tough one but no one ever told you life is easy. I’m still working on this one and I’m grateful that God knows that and that he shows me grace during my growth.

Have an attitude of gratitude. Being grateful for that cup of fresh, hot coffee in the morning, for the warm fire to sit by or even that you have heat in that place you call home is huge. Be grateful that you have a computer or laptop or phone that you can engage with others through the wonders of internet, Facebook, Amazon Prime or face time. Be grateful you can open your fridge and it’s full of food you got to purchase from that job you think you hate getting up for in the morning. You get it – be grateful for every little thing.

Give hugs freely! Hugs increas the love hormone oxytocin which is beneficial for stress levels, heart health and more. A 20 second hug reduces the harmful physical effects of stress, including it’s impact on your blood pressure and heart rate. A 10 second hug a day may fight infections, boost your immune system, ease depression and lessen fatigue. The huggee gets the same back! (From Fun Facts About Hugging by Dr. Mercola February 6, 2014). When you are hugging or being hugged – it’s hard to be negative!

Say ‘I love you’. Say it often. Not just to your lover but to your family and friends but most importantly – to YOURSELF. Look yourself in the mirror and say to yourself – I love you everyday. You might have to fake it until you mean it but say it everyday and once you mean it – don’t stop.

I’ll leave you with a poem I read at my father’s funeral in 1987. I was 24 when he passed away and he was the epitome of this poem. This poem has meant so much to me – not only because it reminds me of my father but it reminds me how much of an impact I can make for myself and for others.


by Jan Lavalley

Outside my window, a new day I see,

Only I can determine what kind of day it will be.

It can be busy and sunny, laughing and gay,

Or boring and cold, unhappy and grey.

My own state of mind is the determining key,

For I am the person I let myself be.

I can be thoughtful and do all I can to help,

Or be selfish, and think just of myself,

I can enjoy what I do and make it seem fun,

Or gripe and complain and make it hard on someone.

I can be patient with those who may not understand,

Or belittle and hurt them as much as I can.

But I have faith in myself, And believe what I say.

And I personally intend to make the best of each day.

Karla O'Neill