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8 Signs You’re Faking That You’re Fine

As Oklahomans, we’re used to warm smiles greeting us everywhere we go. But sometimes, those smiles are more of a mask than a polite greeting. Stigma, fear, shame, and a variety of other pressures can make it hard to admit when our mental health isn’t at its best. 

Hiding sad or hopeless thoughts inside unfortunately isn’t uncommon, but continually repressing our emotions can be more harmful to our wellbeing in the long run. If you’re feeling symptoms of depression, anxiety, or any other mental health struggle, the first step to feeling better is admitting that something isn’t right. 

Here are eight signs that it might be time to get real about how you feel.

If you’re struggling with your mental health or thinking of suicide, the 988 Mental Health Lifeline is available 24/7. Call or text 988 for free, confidential help.

You Keep Saying “I’m Fine”

“How are you doing?” We hear it every day from friends, coworkers, and even well-intentioned cashiers. As creatures of habit, “I’m fine” or “Doing great” often become innocent responses to just get on with our day. However, if you find yourself using these phrases as shields to avoid talking about how you’re actually doing, it might be time to look honestly at your feelings.

You’re Deflecting How You Feel

Redirecting conversations or cracking jokes to keep from getting too personal have their time and place, but frequent deflections from deeper conversations — especially with people you trust — can be a sign that you’re masking how you really feel.

You’re Losing Yourself in Social Media

Social media can be a great way to stay connected with friends and the world around you. On the flip side, it can also lure us into feeling competitive with others. If that screen time is on the rise, it might be time to ask yourself if you’re using social media to avoid the real world.

You’re Drained by Your Favorite Things

When we’re feeling low, even the activities we usually love aren’t enough to lift our spirits. Suddenly, going to the movies or getting dinner with friends no longer brings us joy. Take note if you’re feeling drained by activities that once energized you, as this is one of the most common that your brain isn’t feeling right.

You’re Avoiding Alone Time

We all know spending too much time in isolation can be a mental health red flag. The opposite can also indicate things aren’t okay. Constantly surrounding yourself with others or always keeping yourself busy can be tactics to evade being alone in your thoughts and feelings.

You’re Going Through the Motions

As humans, routines are essential to staying on track, but when you’re faking that you’re fine, daily tasks can feel purely mechanical. If you find yourself phoning it in at work or in your home life, it could be a sign that you’re keeping up a facade.

Your Body is Sending Signals

When we’re avoiding our mental health, it will often show up in our physical health. If you notice significant changes in your appetite or sleep patterns, your body could be telling you that you’re not doing well emotionally. Unexplained headaches or stomach issues could also be signs it’s time to look inside.

You’re Canceling Plans Regularly

Sometimes canceled plans are necessary, but isolating yourself on the regular can be a signal that there may be something deeper going on. If you’re canceling plans or turning down invitations to social events often, this could be a sign that your mental health needs addressed.

Help is Always Here

Everyone experiences their highs and lows, and there is nothing wrong with not feeling okay. If you recognize these signs in yourself or a loved one, reaching out for support is crucial. The folks at 988 Oklahoma are here to lend an understanding ear and connect you with the resources you need. Call or text 24/7 for free, confidential help.

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