We know that the right thing to do is to be honest and not to tell lies to others. And we know the ramifications of getting caught when we do lie.
But what about all of the lies we tell ourselves? Are the consequences of lying to yourself sabotaging your success?
You may not even realize it, but you've been lying to yourself over and over again. In fact, some of your favorite sayings are boldfaced lies. These lies are just one of the many ways that you justify to yourself (and others) why you are where you are, instead of being where you'd like to be.
You're not alone. At some point, we're all guilty of trying to rationalize our current state of existence. Sadly, that rationalization only does one thing. It prevents us from reaching our full potential and living the life we were meant to live.
Are you feeling like something is missing in your life? Perhaps you're struggling to find your purpose or to figure out why your life hasn't turned out the way you hoped? Or maybe you're feeling stuck, and nothing you do seems to make a difference?
If any of these describe how you're feeling right now, read through this list of lies and see which ones sound familiar.
1. I hate my job, but at least I have one.
I've lost count of the number of times I've heard this one...or said it myself. I know first hand that having a job you hate can lead to a miserable existence, both at and away from work. We try hard to convince ourselves that we're lucky to have a job, but we do nothing to make things better or find a better job.
2. I'm too busy to _____________.
You can fill in the blank with all sorts of actions you haven't taken. We're all busy, yet we seem to be able to find time for the things that are most important to us, especially those things that help us escape reality. How much time have you spent watching your favorite TV show? What about the hours you've spent on Facebook this week?
3. I've never been good at that.
You've already convinced yourself that you're not good at something, so why even try right?
4. I can't do that, I'm an introvert.
I've said this lie so many times in my life that I would have convinced myself I was an introvert even if I wasn't one. As an introvert, there is nothing that you can't do, there is just a better way of doing it.
5. I'm horribly out of shape, but I'm not the only one.
Just because so many people you know are out of shape doesn't make it okay. If you want to be in shape, start hanging around other people who are in shape. As Jim Rohn said, "You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with."
6. I'm too old to start a new career.
I lost my job at the age of 44. I spent the first few months convincing myself that this lie was true. But as I read and learned about others who found success later in life, I found the confidence to make a huge career change myself. The saying, "age ain't nothing but a number" definitely rings true here.
7. I just work better under pressure.
That's the perfect lie to justify why you're putting off until tomorrow what you should have done last year.
8. I'm great at multi-tasking.
How often have you prided yourself on your ability to multi-task? Aren't we supposed to wear our multi-tasking abilities as a badge of honor? I've worn this badge myself, but I've recently realized how multi-tasking only makes us more mediocre at whatever it is that we're doing.
9. I can't be successful because _____________.
Another lie that you can fill in the blank using all sorts of excuses. You can blame your parents, your education, your bosses, or any number of other things. The reality is, there is nothing or no one but yourself that is responsible for your success, or lack thereof. Don't blame yourself. Instead, empower yourself knowing that you, and you alone, are responsible and capable of success.
I realize how eliminating these lies (and all of the other ones you've been using) from your life is easier said than done, but I hope you can see how important this is. It's easy to use these lies, better known as sensible precautions or realistic expectations, to deny that you've been settling for second best in your life.
In using these, you've rationalized why mediocrity has been ruling your life. That's exactly what I did for most of my life.
But losing my job forced me to wake up and realize that I had to take responsibility. That meant taking responsibility, not only for everything that had happened in my past but more importantly taking responsibility for architecting my future. That became the catalyst that help me achieve the success that I've achieved today.
You can do this, too. I don't know which of these lies you've been telling yourself. But I do know that once you start being honest with yourself and take responsibility for your life, you will be in control over your future. You're capable of this and so much more. You deserve this and more success in your life.
What lies or excuses have been sabotaging your success?
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