We lie to ourselves on a daily basis. These lies cover up our perceived shortcomings and prevent us from taking risks. Ultimately, these lies limit our lives and our ability to enjoy life fully. In the end, our lies serve the purpose of making us feel better in the short-term. You may not even be aware of the lies you tell yourself.
Avoid lying to yourself and start living:
- “I don’t have a choice.” We all have an unlimited number of options available to us at any time. You might not feel brave or capable enough to consider them all, but you do have options. Consider what advice you would give a friend in a similar situation. Or determine what your most capable friend would do. Can you do the same?
- “If I do X or say Y, people will think less of me.” Thought it’s hard to believe, no one cares. Everyone is too preoccupied with their own lives or else wondering what your opinion is of them.
- If you believe you’re worthy, you won’t have these types of thoughts. You’re good enough to do and say what you want.
- “It’s too late for me.” People have graduated from medical school in their 60’s. An 80-year old successfully climbed Mount Everest. Do you still think it’s too late?
- Many things become less convenient as we get older. For example, it’s more challenging to go back to school when you have a family and a full-time job compared to a single, 20-year old. But challenging and impossible are completely different.
- “Anything short of perfect is failure.” If you have to be the best at something before you’ll try, you’ll never get off the couch. Most of us don’t have the potential to be the best at anything, but we can all be pretty good at just about anything. However, it requires time and effort.
- Do you really need to be the best? That’s another sign of feeling unworthy. There’s no reason to be competitive with everything you do. Enjoy yourself without worrying about how well you’re doing.
- “I’d be happy if I had more money.” Studies have shown that happiness and income are only correlated up to a salary of roughly $70,000 per year. That means that millionaires are no happier than those that make $70,000 annually. If you can pay your bills each month, money isn’t limiting your happiness.
- “I can change him (or her).” Unlikely. Think about how hard is to change yourself, even when you want to change. Now imagine how difficult it is to change someone else. And that other person probably doesn’t want to change. It isn’t going to happen.
- Learn to accept others as they are. If something about them is too disagreeable, distance yourself from them.
- “I’m limited in my ability to accomplish anything.” It has been said that learning to walk and talk are far more challenging than anything else anyone has ever accomplished. You’re probably saying to yourself, “Well, everyone can walk and talk.” Exactly. You’re infinitely more capable than you need to be.
- You may have a few issues to resolve, but your inherent capability isn’t one of them.
We are masters at deluding ourselves. We lie to the person in the mirror in order to protect ourselves – to make us feel better. Avoid giving up your future in order to appease your emotions in the short-term. It could be argued that the purpose of all self-help is to learn how to lie to ourselves less frequently. Try it! You could be the next marvel of the universe!