I am a liar. I am a damn good liar, if I may say so myself. I've had a lot of practice, and the more I've done it, the easier it is. I don't necessarily think I lie that much more than most people, but it's enough.
I lie to get myself out of trouble, to buy myself time when I haven't done something I promised to do, and to make myself appear better or more important than I actually am. And most disturbingly, I sometimes lie about things for absolutely no reason, which serve no purpose, and spill from my mouth without a thought.
I lie to my boss, I lie to my clients, I lie to my nutrition tracker (!), and I definitely spew my rhetoric to myself. And for the most part, I've got myself convinced.
Lying is so second-nature, now, that I haven't really thought about it as a problem recently. But I just watched a movie called Dakota Skye, about a girl who knows whenever she is being lied to, and then meets a boy who never lies.
I started to feel extremely guilty about all the lies I've spewed just in the past week. And I googled, "how to be honest." This is what came up:
The author's suggestion for how to be honest all the time is this: "Never do something you will have to lie about later. If you have to lie about it, you shouldn’t be doing it."
That struck a chord. I usually am lying to cover up something that I have done wrong, or not done at all. If I strive to be better than that, to live a life where I don't have to cover things up, I won't need to lie.
I've made a foray into this territory before. When I first began learning about Buddhism, one of the precepts was "right speech," which means speaking honest, comforting, caring, and worthwhile words. I tried it for a while, avoiding lies, trying my hardest to make sure that each thing I said was genuine and heart-felt. It was extremely difficult, but yielded great results. I felt *more* powerful when I took responsibility for my actions, and I think that admitting when I was wrong made those I dealt with respect me *more* than when I convinced them that I was always right.
Starting right now, I am resuming my path of honesty. This is going to be hard. There's nothing more honest than that.