With 2020 officially over (hooray!), thoughts are turning to New Year’s resolutions. I can imagine some serious promises were made at the stroke of midnight this year.
New year, new you! Right?
We don’t believe that here at Rising Vibe. I’m passionate about ongoing learning and development, but why at this time of year do we feel the need to radically change? We are all perfectly imperfect. The pressure to have everything figured out is always there, but in the New Year, we think we have to become a whole new person. So let me say this. We’re human beings. We’re never going to have it all sussed. At Rising Vibe, we don’t think you have to be a NEW you. You’re absolutely fine as you are.
How about focusing on being the REAL you.
‘Functioning Fakeaholics’ or ‘Corporate Contortionists’, pretend they’re ok when they’re not. We coined these terms a few years ago here at Rising Vibe, as we see them all too often in the corporate world. FF’s and CC’s maintain a pretence that isn’t real, in order to fit in. The go to work every day and do their job, but they’re struggling. They may be losing sleep. Anxious. Stressed. They may feel scared, desperate and unable to cope. But on the surface, to everyone else, they seem fine.
We are all Functioning Fakeaholics at some level.
At one end of the spectrum, we might put on a brave face every now and then, for an easy life. At other end, we might have a debilitating fear around self-disclosure and vulnerability. The fear of being judged can be all consuming. We’re terrified of showing any emotion, just in case we’re labelled as weak, incompetent or unable to do our job. In all my years coaching people in the corporate world, I haven’t met one person who hasn’t done this to some degree at some point in their career.
Functioning Fakeaholics don’t allow themselves to be real – to feel what they really need to feel.
FF’s will deny and avoid, push away and numb their real feelings and emotions. They pretend they don’t care. That it doesn’t bother them. They man-up and crack on. I recognise it immediately in others, because I’ve been there myself. I was a FF for a long time, showing up with a front that I had it all together, when I really didn’t.
The trouble is, you can’t keep a low vibe emotion down for long. They have a nasty habit of showing up at the most inconvenient times in the most horrible of forms. For me, it was anxiety and night time panic attacks. For others its depression or physical illness and ailments. Some try to numb with drink and drugs, over spending or over eating.
FF’s are like fizzy bottles of pop. Those low vibe emotions are the bubbles rattling around inside of us. If we loosen the lid and let those feelings come to the surface, we can manage them and ease the pressure. When we deny or avoid we’re keeping the lid screwed on tight, until those low vibe emotions literally explode out of us! When an FF ‘explodes’ they cease to function entirely. This can take many forms, from job resignation, marriage breakdown, mental and physical breakdown or serious illness. We can’t keep going as a Functioning Fakeaholic. Eventually real feelings catch us up. Denying them will hinder us every time.
Functioning Fakeaholics are everywhere and show up in business as Corporate Contortionists, because of lack of psychological safety in the workplace.
As a general rule, being led by emotions at work is still very much frowned upon and we hear statements like ‘don’t be emotional’, ‘take the emotion out of it’ and ‘you’re over emotional’. Organisational beliefs like this can run right through the heart of business culture. But we’re all humans with a complex range of feelings and emotions whether we like it or not. We have to learn to accept this.
We can never be our best when we’re Functioning Fakeaholics.
Some of us can cope better than others, but some are too afraid they will be ‘exposed’, so they numb, avoid and deny. By spending all of our time and energy trying to cover up and avoid how we’re really feeling, we cannot possibly be the best versions of ourselves and we have far less time and energy for the job at hand.
One way to support your FF’s is to check in on a regular basis with the Rising Vibrational scale. It helps people get to grips with where they are and how they’re REALLY feeling, so that they can make small shifts towards feeling better.