There are many signs of depression that can be easily missed, especially by those that are already in the throes of depression. One of the major symptoms of depression is being plagued by the feeling that your happiness is insincere. This can happen even if it’s not true. You may genuinely feel happy but keep imagining that you either aren’t happy or that you don’t deserve to be happy. Even when you’re smiling and having fun, you may be experiencing the haunting sensation that it isn’t real or that it’s hollow and empty. This feeling can be incredibly subtle at first.
Faking Happiness Could Lead to Depression
According to many experts, it’s much healthier to confront your emotions directly than to keep them buried inside. Fake happiness may also be instrumental in perpetuating a cycle of unhappiness and depression in some people. Studies have shown that faking the appearance of being happy may actually make people more depressed than they would be ordinarily. This goes contrary to the traditional belief that putting a smile on automatically improves your mood. While this may be true for some people, it’s not necessarily true for those who are clinically depressed.
Removing Your Support System
Hiding your mood from your friends and family may also prevent them from helping you through your depression. You may wonder why your family and friends aren’t reaching out to you without realizing that you’re sending them signals that you’re happy. This can even lead to resentment, as you may start to wonder how those that are close to you could possibly ignore signs that seem obvious to you. It’s important to understand that people will generally believe what is shown to them. If you give the outward appearance of being happy, it’s highly likely that they will assume that you are.
Inauthentic happiness often does nothing but keep up a harmful facade. If you have realized that your happiness feels empty, you may want to talk it over with your family and friends and seek professional counseling. Sometimes there may be real reasons or actual circumstances for your depression or it may be entirely chemically induced. If so, your mental health professional can discuss options with you.