Autumn has arrived. You may be drowning in a to-do list at work that is getting longer by the minute. Just a few months ago all these responsibilities didn’t faze you at all; after a productive day at work you would leave the office and enjoy the sunshine and a long evening of warm, a summery bliss.

Now the days are getting shorter, the daylight is waning, and sweater weather is upon us. As the days get darker and colder, you know what is coming and it instills dread within your very soul. Seasonal Affective Disorder is a real thing, and it wreaks havoc on over 10 million Americans every year.

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What is SAD? and what are Symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder:

It can be challenging to hold onto your authenticity when you are around people who seem fake. Whether it is in a work setting, community interactions or any other social encounter, it can be awkward to know how to respond without compromising your own internal guide. A fake laugh, unreasonably bubbly personality or tone of voice that is incongruous with what is going on can be more than just off-putting, it can influence interactions and really throw us off at times.

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Why Does Lack of Authenticity Impacts Us

On the surface, it seems as though others lack authenticity or even outright “fake” behavior shouldn’t impact us much. Afterall, we’re a pleasantly open “you do you” culture right now, so what does it really matter? Dealing with inauthentic people very much impacts our own thoughts, feelings and behaviors. We learn a lot about people with the subtle, unspoken cues we receive during conversation. We are hard-wired to pick up on these nuances, which we translate into information that guides our own responses and behaviors. When we are faced with fake behavior, we don’t necessarily know what to do with it. …

Remember that show, The Apprentice? You know, the show where one contestant was fired each week until a single person remained and got the major promotion? That show was a guilty pleasure for many of us back in the day. It was mindless entertainment. We made predictions about who would be the next to be canned and laughed at the ruthlessness of the competitors.

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Remember that deer-in-the-headlights expression that the competitors had when it became clear that the conversation was heading toward their dismissal? For those of us who have lost a job, this familiar expression captures the panic and dread inherent with the firing experience.

How Being Fired Affects Us and How to Overcome it:

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Living with Finesse By Dr. Teyhou Smyth

Dr. Teyhou Smyth is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (#115137) and an Adjunct Professor of Psychology at the Graduate School of Education & Psychology.

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