We need to lead authentic lives. All of us are in trouble if we do otherwise. We will be deeply restless and unhappy. This will be our reality, unless and until we choose to live authentically.
The False Past
I lived with a lot of fear for a long while in my youth. And even for a time after. I was afraid of not being liked. I feared that I was not doing enough to make people around me happy.
You see, my philosophy was that if I tried my best to be pleasant, likable and amiable, everyone would be happy. The problem was that I was not being real and honest with myself. I lied to myself while trying to create this image of a likable person.
What I did not realize was that in the process, I was not being true to myself. I lied to myself. I guess I was living in denial. Even going so far as to endure abuse in my first marriage.
The problem with constantly lying to ourselves is that our values and deepest desires do not line up with our actions. We feel hollow and fake. If we constantly lie to ourselves, our lives become false and empty.
We lie to ourselves in a variety of ways; https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/science-choice/201708/the-many-ways-we-lie-ourselves.
We lie to ourselves by doing the following:
- Avoiding information that demotivates us.
- Denying reality to create a false sense of security.
- Being overconfident or unrealistically optimistic.
- Displaying self-handicapping behavior.
- Acting in ways to project how we would like to be seen.
- Embracing information that supports our beliefs and rejecting information that contradicts them.
- Displaying a sour attitude and poor sportsmanship in the face of opposing beliefs.
- Attributing our success to our enduring character traits, and our failures to unfortunate circumstances.
Aligning with Truth
The reality is that some people are not of the view that lying constantly is a bad thing. There are quite a few people out there who put their needs and desires ahead of others. They have no qualms about lying to themselves and to others, to get ahead.
In a further stroke of tragedy, these same people are often described as ‘go-getters’, ‘focused’ and some are even described as potential leaders. The reality is that they are abusive and destructive.
At the end of the day, a transparent, open and truthful life lived with integrity is a life well-lived. Distance yourself from the fakes and the liars. Otherwise, they will use you, abuse you and cast you aside. They will leave you totally spent. All you will have left will be a hollow feeling and a knowledge that you have lied to yourself.
Worse still, in allowing lies in your life, you would have lost your way in your deeply important soul journey.
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