Fake it till you make it.
It’s now Adar on the Jewish calendar, which our sages say is a month inherently infused with increased joy.
But each year at this time, I reflect on why I don’t necessarily feel a spike of simcha.
Now that we have made Aliyah, evidence of Adar and the upcoming holiday of Purim are everywhere.
Inside, however, I don’t yet feel in sync with this prescribed time of joy.
But I’m learning that while I may not get to choose how I feel, I do get to choose how I act.
So I’m experimenting with something new this month, which is actually a directive from Torah and our sages.
They say that one of the most efficient ways to attain personal happiness is by acting happy.
Laugh, and happiness will follow suit.
I’m smiling more even if I don’t feel like it. And as it turns out, this little act of moving my facial muscles seems to affect my mood.
A small leap of human faith actually changes how I feel, and may impact others as well.
King David in his Psalms says: Ivdu et Hashem besimchah, “Serve G‑d with joy.”
Even if I don’t feel like it, it’s a powerful choice I get to make over and over again.
Chodesh Tov, from Eretz Yisrael!