Almost all of us are remorseful of lying to ourselves. Why do we do it? Why do we fool ourselves?
We do it, because it is an easy way out. The hard hitting truth is most of us are slothful. We want the path of least resistance. We want things to happen easily. The second reason we do it is out of fear. Most of us are so afraid of change. We fear the unknown. We fear rejection. We fear failure.
Over the years, I have discovered that many a time I too have been guilty of telling untruth statements to myself — but that does not definitely make it okay. I have discovered, over the years, that I am happier when I face the truth and take action on what I can act upon.
Here are seven untruth statements we all tell ourselves:
1- If only He/She/Something came back to my life, I would be happy:
After my book became a best-seller, hundreds of people have written to me lamenting over a lost love. Sometimes the person would have walked out. Sometimes they would have dumped somebody. They keep feeling that if things went back to what they used to be, they would be happier.
For me, I faced my biggest personal loss when I lost my grandfather (who meant the world to me) all of a sudden in 2006. There had not been a single day when I would not have spoken to my grandfather. He was hale, hearty, and healthy. And then in a moment he was no more. For nearly three years I was totally stricken by grief, so much that I felt debilitated. I kept thinking that if only he was around, I would be happy.
Even to this day, I cannot deny that there are days when I miss him that it almost hurts physically, especially when I achieve success in my professional front, like getting an award, and he is not there to share it, but I also now recognize, how my life has changed because he was no longer around and because I learnt to take action, and not keep lamenting.
2- I would do it if only I had the time:
Many of us fool ourselves saying ‘I really want to do it, but I do not have the time.’ That is a big lie. Truth is time is just an excuse. If you want to do it that badly you will always find the time or make the time. If it is that important to you, you will! You can cut out on your TV viewing time .(Personally I do not watch TV at all and I only watch movies and that too after reading up on IMDB) Or perhaps the time you waste gabbing on the phone? (I do not know what works for you, but when I am writing I do not answer the phone and I do not answer the doorbell too). We can get up an hour earlier (Yes , it is okay to get just seven hours of sleep — you won’t get any dark circles under your eyes) if we desperately want to do something.
3- It’s okay to be a little bit overweight and to have a beer-belly or love handles, especially if you are married/middle aged/older :
It is definitely NOT okay! Personally I know many people who are in their forties, fifties and even seventies who are in TERRIFIC shape. I know a seventy year old who could any day give a twenty five year old stiff competition in fitness.I truly want to be like him when (and if) I reach his age.
Being healthy and fit does work wonders when it comes to self-esteem, especially in the jealousy department. It is important to exercise daily and adopt a healthy lifestyle.
A friend of mine once told me ‘But you are married. You can afford to put on weight.’ If looks could kill, my friend would have been dead. To let oneself go, just because one is married is criminal. Being fit is not just the prerogative of the single ready to mingle.
4- I will get around to it someday, just as soon as I will achieve this feat:
This is another lie we tell ourselves. I am guilty of this too. Many times when I don’t want to do something, I find that it is easier to just lie to myself saying I will eventually get around to it ‘someday’. The ‘someday’ never comes and suddenly one finds that YEARS have gone by and now it is impossible to do it. Procrastination is indeed the biggest thief of time. If you want to do it, do it today.. Do it now! And no it cannot wait.
5- If only that incident had not happened, I would have been better off:
This is again a ‘wish it could have been’ lament. I was guilty of this too. But then I realised that certain events happened and only because they happened did certain other events happen and though it did cause me a lot of pain, it also helped me GROW, as a person. I learnt so much from it about myself, about people, about life. Today I am more accepting and less resentful about those things that happened which caused me so much grief but which I could do nothing about, but bear it.
6- I have to do this task else my partner will get mad at me:
This is probably a lie we so cleverly believe that we might find it hard to even accept that we are lying. Fact is we do have a choice. We have a choice to make our partner understand. But it involves confrontation and explaining. Most of us like to avoid that. I have broken off friendships which caused me pain simply because I felt too much pressure from the other end to conform to their ideal view of how I should be. I did try many times to explain, to make the other person see it from my perspective. But I did not succeed. I am happier today because I have been true to myself.
Please realise that I am in no way advocating break-ups just because your partner does not see your point of view. It would be really foolish to be so presumptive. But I do think that certain things, one HAS to stand up for, if it means a lot to you.
7- I am not talented enough:
You are! All it takes is constant practice. Some might argue that how can it be when they do not have even one artistic bone in their body. I would say to such people that you have not found the right teacher. Yes, there is a difference between a natural gift and one that is cultivated. But any skill definitely CAN be cultivated. For example I am not musical at all. My friend is very musical and he has an ear for music, he sings well too and can pick up tunes on his own and play the guitar. But I did learn how to play the guitar and since I did not have a natural gift, I had to work hard, but play it I did.
Same goes for drawing portraits, playing a sport — anything really.
You CAN , if you work hard enough!
So what lie are you going to stop telling yourself today? What changes are you going to make in your life?