When Lying becomes a Habit
“I’m not upset that you lied to me; I’m upset that from now on I can never believe you.”
We have all lied at one point of our lives or another. Sometimes we tell a lie to escape from punishment. Sometimes we tell fibs so that our friend or sibling does not get into trouble. Some children tell tall tales to impress others and appear cooler, richer or groovier than they really are. Some seek attention and sympathy by lying. Some evil geniuses can even create stories to set friends against each other or get others in trouble.
|A lie may take care of the present, but it has no future.|
How telling lies harms the personality
No matter what the reasons for evading truth are, habit of telling lies can be a very destructive personality trait. You might think, “What is the harm in telling my boss that I could not do the project because my wife was so ill, we had to take her to the hospital?”
Can you imagine your embarrassment when during a chance meeting, this topic comes up and your lie comes out in the open? How deceived your boss will feel and how your integrity will suffer Worst of all, he will begin to question your each and every statement and that will be very unpleasant.
Telling the truth is always the better option, no matter what the consequences. Sometimes it can be really hard. If you think that your classmates/colleagues will laugh at you if you are not well off or do not have a fancy car and invent stories to impress them, you are actually making matters worse. If you have strict teachers or parents, it might seem easier to lie your way out of an unpleasant situation but it never happens that way.
In trying to cover the first lie, you have to tell another lie and this leads to an endless cycle of lies. And all these lies can come crashing down on your head any time. You will live in constant fear of truth being discovered and it can have a very bad effect on your nerves. You might constantly feel guilty and apprehensive and it will seem as if all joys are seeping out of your life.
What this habit reveals about your personality:
Telling lies is fact an expression of being afraid….. afraid of what others will think, afraid of what will be found out about us, afraid of facing the reality. Every time we tell a lie, the thing that we fear grows stronger till it gains control over us. When children lie about various aspects of their lives and pretend to be something they are not, they are actually exhibiting inferiority complex and want to appear to be something they are not.
Telling lies also shows weakness of character. A liar makes up stories to cover up something he has done wrong. Or he makes excuses for something he was given responsibility for and did not fulfill. Then when he lies about the reasons, he is in fact being cowardly as he is not willing to take the consequences for his actions.
How to avoid telling lies
Now that we have seen how harmful lying is for our peace of mind, let us try to find out ways how to avoid telling them in the first place.
Show courage and integrity:
If you did not do your school assignment, go up to the teacher, own up and apologize. Maybe you will get a punishment but be a brave and endure it. You might get another chance and you can use it to finish your work. Once, the whole episode is behind you, you will be stronger, more responsible and conscientious about your work.
Stop and think before you tell lies
Remember what happened to the boy who cried, “Wolf!" Keep on reminding yourself that the truth has a way of coming to the surface. Once you lose people’s trust, you lose the power to be heard by other people - because they will stop listening and believing you.
Confess and apologize.
When you force yourself to admit that you have done something wrong, you are taking the first step in breaking this terrible habit. Suppose you broke an expensive vase. You might be tempted to say that your five year old brother did it. But ask yourself,”Is it fair? Is this right?” What is the worst thing that can happen? Your parents might be angry with you for a little while but they will always appreciate your honesty and courage when you tell the truth.
Save yourself from total disgrace:
Sometimes people tell lies to create trouble or get others in trouble. This is again a very cruel and wrong thing to do. We must realize that lies always get exposed and then the liar will have to face shame and embarrassment.
Avoid situations that might tempt or cause you to lie.
If you have friends who are constantly boasting and it impels you to lie, maybe you need new friends or you just need enough self confidence to know that while your life is different from others, it is equally worthy and blessed in many ways.
When friends lie:
When friends lie to each other, it can eventually destroy friendships. You do not have to tolerate anyone’s lies. If your friend tells lies in front of you, change the subject or let him know privately that it is not a good habit. Even with words like: “Are you sure?” or “I can’t believe this,” you can let others know politely that you are not falling for their stories. This will eventually stop them. Remember, if you are honest and truthful, it becomes easier for your friends to be open and unpretentious too.
So chuck this bad habit out of your life and enjoy your life!