Friends, I have a confession to make. Sometimes I tell myself lies. Sometimes the lies I tell myself are fairly benign, and they help me get through something. For instance, I'll tell myself "I've got this!" in a stressful or intense situation. Spoiler alert: I don't always really "got this." But that's my way of faking it 'til I make it.
Or, I'll be upset about something. It'll be really pickin' at my heart, and I'll tell myself that it really isn't that big of a deal. Eventually, I start believing that, and I move on and walk away.
But I've told myself some other lies that maybe aren't so good, and I'm starting to see this practice is no longer serving me, if it ever did in the first place.
If you're in the mood for some entertainment, get yourself some Junior Mints and a coffee beverage appropriate for whatever time of day you're reading this post, and settle in for the Top Ten Lies I Tell Myself!
Top Ten Lies I Tell Myself (But Shouldn't)
1. I hate people.
Actually, no. I don't hate people, as it turns out. I really, really love to be around people. I'm not necessarily into huge noisy chaotic crowds for fun-n-excitement, but I do like to be around people. The trick is to know when to remove myself from all the people and take some time to myself to have some quiet and recharging.
2. People hate me.
I used to tell myself that people hate me, which probably fed into why I told myself that I hate people SOME people have hated me in the past, and I took it to heart. I figured if those people hated me, all the people must hate me, and so if I hate them right back first, I win, because I rejected them before they had a chance to reject me, so there! But yeah, turns out, People don't hate me. Just a select few poor souls who probably also hate terrible things like sunshine and laughter.
3. I'm not a hugger.
Well, okay, so I didn't used to be a hugger, but I've softened since Zoe came along. The world is full of huggers, the huggers aren't going away, and you know what, a little hug every now and then is rad. Some people make it weird and creepy, which gives me an opportunity to make things Even Weirder and Creepier, and usually that takes care of that problem!
4. I'm a pain in the ass.
There might actually be a little truth to this one, if I'm being totally honest, after all, Friends. I can be persistent and stubborn. I tend toward being clingy and needy and insecure. A little (or a lot) neurotic. Aggressively positive when I think a situation warrants it. I ask a lot of question. Pain in the ass qualities. But it isn't always a bad thing to be a pain in the ass, I guess.
5. I shouldn't take up so much space.
Sometimes I feel like I take up too much space in other people's lives. I tell myself that people resent every moment I ask them to spend with me. And I'm sure that there are some people who would agree with me, but I keep getting invited places and people keep accepting my invites, so maybe those for whom I take up too much space just aren't meant to be in my tribe.
6. I need to tone myself down.
I have a big personality. If you tell me to "Be April," you'll get 1000 watts or more. Outsized sense of humor. I'm quite opinionated and straightforward. Aggressively optimistic. I know a lot of things and love to share the knowledge. I'm a flirt. I know this and I own this. 99% of people I come across think nothing of this. But I can tell when I've worn thin with someone, or when someone would prefer the 6-watt version of me. Quiet, reserved, a little mousy, just Less. Easier to disappear into the background. I have to be the 6-watt version of myself in order to get along with some people. SOME people. And quite honestly, if I have to dull myself down from a one-kilowatt beacon down to a 6-watt nightlight bulb, screw those SOME people. Screw them running. In the 6-watt dark where they need to be in order for their little bubbles in the world to be safe for them.
7. I'm annoying AF.
I know annoyance when I see it, and it doesn't take me seeing much of it to knock me off my footing. I don't like to annoy people. So it's just like the need to tone myself down. There are SOME people who I annoy. I can tell. Not ALL people find me annoying. So I'm not everybody's flavor. One person's "annoying" is another person's "delightfully bubbly," I guess.
8. I missed my chance and it's all downhill from here.
I often feel like I flew high, lit low. I had dreams, aspirations, ambitions, and drive when I was younger. Yet, here I am. And as a 40+ woman, I feel like maybe I should be throwing in the towel, putting on the muumuu, sinking into a rocking chair, and fading into the wallpaper. It's all downhill from here, isn't it? Only if I want it to be. For fox sake, I can still turn cartwheels. And I don't throw out my back or break my hips when I do it. I've taken up a new career path. I don't think I look half bad for my age, and I haven't even talked to my dermatologist about Botox or Juvederm or a facelift yet. How about I tell you when it's all downhill, because I acknowledge I have highs and lows, but my star is still trending upwards.
9. Others' time is more valuable or important than my time.
This is one of the most maddening, frustrating lies I've told myself for YEARS. Letting my time be disrespected because I don't see myself as worthy of enforcing any time-boundaries I ought to have. Because remember, I've told myself that I'm annoying AF, I'm too much, I'm a pain in the ass, and that I don't have anything to offer in return, so I need to be super-grateful and super-obsequious when anyone is willing to share any of their time with me. They're being charitable! The least I could do is bend over backwards to accommodate that!
10. I am expendable.
I told myself for years that if I were to disappear tomorrow, nobody would miss me. I don't offer the world anything that anyone else can't offer. I don't see myself as very remarkable or special. Seriously. Anybody could do what I do. This has been my internal monologue for so long that it feels odder to me to notice the people I've become aware of who WOULD notice if I were to disappear tomorrow and realize that they see something cool that I bring to the mix. I've only realized in the last few weeks that maybe I'm not as expendable as I have always told myself I am. It is a very strange feeling, but I think I could get used to it!
So yeah, I have told myself a lot of lies over the years. These are just the top ten I could think of today. Sometimes, I tell myself lies like "I've got this!" so that I really WILL "Got this!" A fake it 'til I make it kind of deal-e-oh. That isn't so bad. That helps me be stronger and better.
Believing these Top Ten Lies I've Told Myself, though- letting this type of lie get into your head can really do a number on a person. It can make you feel worthless, angry, ugly, rotten. It's time to break out of this poor mindset, and I'm working on it!