Stop lying to yourself.

by Judith F Kennedy, PhD

“Above all, don’t lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love.”

― Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov

Have you watched the latest season of House of Cards? It’s intriguing to say the least. Compelling, intriguing and dark so why does it draw us in and keep us fixated on what Claire and Frank will do next? She is so icy and beautiful, perfect posture, impeccable clothes and cool demeanor. He is the perfect mixture of ambition without bounds. Ambition and ego that spills over into evil.

A new character, the author Tom, studies them, looks into their psyches and souls then holds up a mirror for them both to look into their true faces. Frank looks and Claire sees.

What does she see? She understands as we all do that it’s sometimes necessary to lie to others. Sometimes its just easy and or lazy to lie to others, to our partners, our children, our colleagues. Claire and Frank have no qualms about lying. It’s second nature.

But lying to yourself, that’s completely a different story. When you lie to yourself you hold your self back. The most important relationship you have is the one with yourself. Lying to yourself takes away some part of the core truth that is you and when you keep doing that you begin to feel hollow inside. Claire can see that she’s lying to herself and diminishing who she is and becoming a much smaller version of herself. It’s hard, it’s really hard to see this but somehow she knows that she is losing respect for herself.

And having no respect she ceases to love.