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Aha! | Believe it or not, you’re a liar…we all are
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Believe it or not, you’re a liar…we all are

Believe it or not, you’re a liar…we all are

Dan Ariely,  the Author of the book The Honest Truth about Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone Especially Ourselves makes the point that pretty much everyone thinks they are honest but in reality they ‘fudge the truth just a little bit” on many things. We are able to tell ‘little’ lies and still preserve our sense that we are ‘honest people’ (not so, if we tell big lies!).  

Sometimes we lie for good reasons: to protect others, to show ourselves in a better light, to cover up mistakes, to be humorous and so on.

We even lie to ourselves and these lies can be damaging. So why do we lie to ourselves? It’s about protection. The primary role of the subconscious mind is to keep us safe and away from pain. The ‘real truth’ can be painful and goes against the picture we have built up of who we are (our self-concept). We therefore tell ourselves stories; fudging and reframing the truth to maintain the myth of who we think we are. Now this is absolutely fine if we want to have a fixed mindset and put a lid on our growth. But if we want to develop and fulfil our potential then we have to unearth the falsehoods that are limiting us.

Here are some examples of quotes that you’ve probably heard, or may have even said yourself. Try and spot how the thinking behind the words is self-limiting:

“I bet he’s an a***hole (a successful man)”

“My Dad always said that I was good for nothing”

“I’ve always done it this way”

“Nothing ever goes right for me”

“If I can’t get this right, I’m useless”

“There’s no way I can do that”

“I’m stupid”

“I’m not a creative person”

“I’m no good with people”

“I should be happy”

“I’m a worrier and always will be”

“I’ve got nothing to be happy about”

“I attract bad people”