week 4|2017: how + why we lie to ourselves

I can admit I’m guilty of them all at some point, except manic cheeriness; that would never happen. My resting broad face will tell you just how I’m feeling.

Can you admit to any? What can we do to repress the need to lie to ourselves?



28 thoughts on “week 4|2017: how + why we lie to ourselves

  1. Lmfao. The petty part was strictly for me. I’m actually learning about this in therapy left brain and right brain etc. Our brain is an excellent muscle.

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  2. Man oh man. That hit home for me this morning. I’ve had an family quibble that happened over the holidays that’s been bothering me ever since. We havent spoken since then soI wrote the person a letter, since they live out of town, recently just to get what I was feeling off my chest. But I’m still not at peace for some reason. It’s a terrible feeling to deal with. Thinking about it on and off, I have my moments where I just want to go off on this person in my mind/imagination. Ahhhhhhhh…crazy!! Thanks!!!

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    1. For sure! I think sometimes we forget we’re human or that others are human and leave no room for error. It’s silly really, but it’s real! Kudos to you for reaching out. Some people die without making amends, holding grudges for what? Clear the air + move on.

      Hopefully you’ll get your peace. Thank you for your testimony.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh man! at least you recognize that. Are you actively trying to make adjustments or just waiting for people to prove you wrong? I can be quite cynical too, but I do try try try to give people the benefit of doubt. They make it so hard tho..

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      1. I try to make adjustments but as you said, people make it hard…At times it sounds like I rationalize keeping my cynical side by blaming it on others; but when I make an active effort I carry expectations that leave me disappointed…all instances I’ve found myself to be the source of my own unhappiness. Maybe as humans we are afraid of being happy, we assume the worst is yet to come.

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  3. Lawd yes Kelley! To answer your question, I’m all about self-awareness. We first have to be aware of how we feel and then actually face it and figure out why and do something different. For example, I recently realized I’ll say something I don’t like and then say, “but it’s okay”: “I hate my salary, but it’s okay…at least I have a job.” The “it’s okay” part is a lie! I have to stop saying it because it suppresses my true feelings about the situation. Soooo another example is when a friend can’t make it to somewhere, I now say, “Okay. I’m disappointed, but I understand,” instead of saying, “it’s okay,” cause it’s not.

    One more thing is The Four Agreements talks about how and why we lie to ourselves in depth. How can we expect others to be honest with ourselves when we betray ourselves every day?

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    1. Right right! That last question! Yes! Why are we denying ourselves the truth? I think we are just conditioned to pacify, to make “the best” out of crappy situations to avoid looking like an ingrate when we’re actually dying inside. Who’s winning in that situation? Sugarcoating our actual feelings so we don’t make others feel bad when it is them who have to live with their choices, not us.

      Good for you for recognizing that auto-response and making moves to erase it. Thanks for the great feedback and sharing your testimony!

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  4. Wow, there are a lot of facets here. I am a big fan of School of Life’s videos; and this one is a good one. I am guilty of most of these, as well. I think most of us are. Actually, I think all of us are – because in order to be a member of civilization, we have to suppress our deepest desires. We all have impulses for lots of sex, sleep, and food – but if we acted on these all the time, we could not live with other people. So, as children, we are “domesticated” (i.e. potty trained, told to stop crying, told to wait until lunch time) – allowing us to live in relative harmony with everyone else. In other words, we have to lie to ourselves so that a civilized society can exist. Lying to one’s self is a human problem because we are interested in “rights” and “justice” and all of that. Animals do not care about this … they are only interested in fulfilling their biological needs, so they do not need to lie to themselves (with the exception of animals that we domesticate as pets, of course). Animals walk around naked because they keep it real with themselves and do not lie to themselves. Humans wear clothes (no other species does) because we lie to ourselves. It’s the curse of the human condition. Lying to ourselves to build a civil society is not a problem per se, but it is a problem when we are no longer able to satisfy those original desires – which I think is the case.

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    1. I always love reading your insightful feedback Darryl. Thankya. I agree that the problem lies in playing so many roles that we no longer recognize (or like) the face looking back at us in the mirror.

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  5. Human civilization is a lie . . it is built on the lie that we are not animals with primal needs. So if we want to stop lying to ourselves, we would have to forfeit civilization and devolve into savagery. (although we could argue that civilization = savagery, lol).

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      1. It depends on what the distraction and addiction are. I am not sure if I can honestly remedy my addictive nature, though. Like for instance, I have an addiction to popcorn right now, which sounds funny, but I do and I can recognize it as that. Before that, it was sugar (and I still have a lot of sweets in spurts but not as bad as I used to). And I guess popcorn transfers into sugar so essentially, it is the same issue in a different taste. Usually, my addictions are related to food so yes I could try to calm that part of me down with food but more than likely, I would then transfer that addiction to something else and it could be something worse or better. Right now, I try not to focus on it too much and kinda look at the popcorn thing as a phase. Hopefully, my next addiction will be kale chips. lol I always say that anyone can be addicted to anything. It’s not the ‘thing’ that is the trigger – it’s just a part of their personality and if it’s not one thing, more than likely, it’ll be something else, and maybe it can be remedied but it would be extremely hard to do because you would have to go really deep to heal that part.

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        1. I see. It sounds harmless but maybe it’s not? You’d have to get down to the nitty gritty-when and why you indulge? Your feelings when you eat popcorn and when you can’t get your fix?

          A great example (I think): I had a friend who went through an Indian phase where she was engulfed in Indian culture. Then tiramisu. Then not eating at all then make up then Korean culture. I noticed all of this, much of which she admitted was a void to fill the loss of her mom. She really had no choice to get up + keep going on with life and I still don’t think she’s completely given herself time to grieve. I think allotting some time to figure it out would help regulate the behaviors instead of randomly drowning in temporary distractions. I also think it’s a control issue-fixating on the things she can control.. but I’m no doctor.

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          1. Yeah control plays a big role actually. I think the feeling is temporary joy but yes it’s definitely a void filler that’s not really a good one. I recognize it and I believe it’s going to take awhile before I can heal it… may be one of those lifelong lessons.

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