Don’t lie just to please others – 20 Mar 13


In my life it has happened many times that I was asked a question and I knew before that the person who asked would not be very happy about my answer if I replied with full honesty. I know this will happen to you at some point or the other, too, and it is a situation that makes many people very uncomfortable. Let’s explore our options to reply today and in the next days:

1st Possibility: Say a Lie

This is the possibility that probably comes very quickly to everybody’s mind: just say whatever the person wants to hear. It would be a lie and you know that very clearly but this option seems very attractive in that moment.

Especially if you are one of those people who always try to make everyone happy, you have probably already found yourself in such a situation. Let’s think of an example: you and your friend plan on going to the cinema and your friend is enthusiastically saying ‘My sister wanted to see that movie, too, would you mind if she came along?’ You don’t really like the company of your friend’s sister and would much rather have an evening alone with your friend. You don’t want to disappoint your friend though and most of all you don’t want to admit you don’t like her sister! So your answer is ‘Yes, of course, I love your sister!’

You want to make everyone feel good and you just want harmony, so what is the harm if you are not completely honest just this one time? It is okay, you spend a lot of time with your friend anyway, so you can share her with her sister! And shouldn’t you learn getting along with her relatives, too?

You may think this now but later on you will realize your mistake when you don’t enjoy your evening! You might make the questioner happy for now, for a short time but on the long run he will find out that you were not honest. Lies never live long and apart from the fact that they are morally wrong, it will come back to you later and that can get quite nasty.

Additionally to creating problems for someone else, you make yourself unhappy by lying. Even if your conscience allows you to say one lie, you won’t be able to behave accordingly. It is not your truth. If you say ‘Yes, I also love blue!’ but then always choose red, the other one will notice! Or you take care to always choose blue – although you would much rather pick red. The result: you are unhappy, the other one is unhappy, this solution failed.

In our example that would mean that you sit in the cinema and the two siblings are having a blast while you don’t really engage in conversation much. Your friend’s sister asks you something and you, annoyed by the situation and maybe even her, reply impolitely or just not with as much heart as your friend is used to – so she asks what the problem is. She might even get angry with you, after all she asked you whether it was fine to bring her sister, so what is the matter with you? Your evening is ruined.

Lying doesn’t solve anything, it creates more and more problems which you didn’t even have before. So I believe it is best for you and those around you if you don’t choose this option!

Happiness, Honesty, Truth

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