ConfidenceEmotionEmpowermentWellbeing

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“If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed” – Lenin

There is a lie.
It seems like such a small thing; it’s only 2 words.
But it is often a lie.
Perhaps the most common lie of all.
It’s a lie we have all told at many times in our lives, and most of us continue to tell it even now.
It seems so small, so innocent.
And yet, in some ways it is the most dangerous lie most of us will ever tell in our lives; it has the power to cause untold damage, to ourselves directly and ultimately indirectly to those we love.

What is this so common yet so dangerous lie?

“I’m fine.”

You see, when we are genuinely fine, many of us will tend to say something like “I’m feeling great, I’ve just been on holiday…” or “I’m fantastic, just going out on a date…” or “I feel wonderful because…” – we say how great we are feeling and explain why (because hey, we feel fantastic, why would we not want to share it with others, right? It’s great!)

However, when someone just says “I’m fine” then this can be a cause for pausing and checking in (unless, of course, they are in the habit of routinely responding to conversation with one or two word replies!)

When we are chatting, especially with friends, we are keen to exchange and share details – that’s why we chat, after all. When we are talking about something which enthuses us, we open up and share a lot – just try asking someone to talk about something which they hold dear, and see how long they go before even pausing to draw breath! What happens when we are asked to talk about something which we don’t want to talk about (perhaps because we don’t like the topic, or it causes us some pain, or any other reason)? We will say as little as we feel we can safely get away with and hope to change the subject swiftly.

Suppose we are feeling down, for example. Very often in such a state, the last thing we want to do is talk about it with others because they will only ask us more questions and that will mean talking about the things which are hurting us and we don’t want to do that at all. So, when the dreaded “How are you” question is raised, if we just say “I’m fine” then the other person will will accept it and move on and we get out of having to explain how bad we feel.

And paradoxically that is perhaps the worst thing we can do, because when we are in a down mood, reaching out to others is often the best thing we can do yet it is the hardest thing, so we hide behind our Great Lie “I’m fine” hoping they will leave us alone during the time we might well need them the most.

See also  Create Your Way

Next time you find yourself wanting to give that evasive “I’m fine” reply, pause for a moment an ask yourself what it is you want to hide by lying to your friend. What is going on inside that you are so afraid of sharing that you are willing to actively tell the biggest lie we tell? What is it which you are choosing to be so scared of that lying is the only option?
And then, instead of hiding behind the Biggest Lie, tell them the truth. Yes, it’s scary but you know what? Because you are telling someone who cares, they will be there for you – speaking to you as someone who has been there many times before, telling your friend the truth will be a lot more helpful that you can ever imagine!

So what to you think? Leave a comment and let me know!