What’s Your Lie-Q?
5 lies we tell ourselves—and how to stop the falsehoods
Honesty may be the best policy, but let’s face it, everyone’s pants are on fire from time to time. And we’re not only fudging the truth with our friends, family, and coworkers—we’re also deceiving ourselves.
“It’s an emotional and physical defense mechanism to distort the way we see things from time to time,” says Simon Rego, Psy.D., director of psychology training at Montefiore Medical Center. “These automatic thoughts can fill our heads without our even being aware of them or their inaccuracy.”
Not a good thing since Notre Dame researchers found that these fibs may impact your health. In a study of 110 adults, those who were told not to lie not only told the truth more often, they also reported improvements in their relationships, better sleep, less stress and sadness, and fewer headaches and sore throats.
To improve your health and your life, prove yourself wrong about these five common lies with our expert tips.
If you just can’t seem to tip the scale in your favor, chances are your weight is a sign of a deeper issue. “It is very difficult to be frank about what is really bothering a person, but it is fairly easy to find something to eat,” says Portland-based psychotherapist Didi Zahariades. “You can lie to yourself and say, ‘I’m hungry,’ when in fact you are stuffing your feelings with immediate gratification and a moment of forgetting about your problems.”
Honestly evaluate how well you’ve been following your diet and fitness plans. Have you been a bit generous with portions lately? Skipping your Tuesday morning bootcamp because you “don’t feel like it”? If so, you know what changes you need to make to start seeing your weight go back down. The key here is patience. “No one puts on 40 pounds in 30 days, but when it comes to shedding those pounds, we expect it to happen quickly,” Zahariades says. Accept that it may be a long journey but one well worth the time and effort, and consider seeing a therapist to help you address any underlying problems that you’re trying to solve (or ignore) by eating.