Acting “As If” and Speaking “As If” Helps Make It Happen
My Georgetown colleague Ann Oliveri (here) posted this lovely short video the other day.
The philosopher and early psychologist William James said that if we act as if something were already true that doing so immediately has an effect in reality. The video says this quite nicely with a number of different examples.
I believe an important corollary to the examples given in the video is in the special case of speech acts. Speaking about things as though they have come to pass also has this kind of magic. In iFoundry we talked to students about the 3 joys, the joy of engineering, the joy of community, and the joy of learning, and the cohort was more joyful, more interested in engineering, a tighter knit community of engaged learners than they otherwise would have been.
When clients change their story (and believe the new story), the feel better, act better, and get better results almost immediately.
This sounds too good to be true, but it is a part of a number of ancient traditions. The Buddhist practice of samma vaca or right speech points in this direction as well as the Toltec practice of impeccability with your word. To engineering ears, it sounds like a violation of some unstated law of nature, conservation of hardship, or some such thing, but I bear witness as a hard-nosed engineer who has seen it in action to often to doubt it any longer.
Try it. You’ll like it. Act as if and speak as if, and immediately start reaping the benefits of the way you would like things to be.