October 17, 2008

The Purpose of Lying (or lack thereof)

How often do we tell people things that we follow up with, "Keep it on the DL though," or "...but don't tell anyone"? Ever thought of why that happens so often? How about what those things are -- those that we follow up with the disclaimer?

This post was supposed to go up in August when I had a long conversation with a friend about a relevant topic, but because I can't say that the insight is 100% relevant at this point in my life, I'll briefly touch upon what he and I discussed. We had a conversation that almost ended in the fashion described above, but just when we thought it was over, it had just begun. That disclaimer sparked a conversation all about why one would ever want to hide something.

Something I've deduced (don't want to say concluded because it's still open to change) is that we hide the things we're least proud of. We hide the things we'd like no one to know, but most of the time, another person is involved so unfortunately, they have to know. Sometimes we even wish that person didn't have to know. I'm sure a lot of us have even realized this, but I've found, in myself and a lot of individuals I speak to, that very rarely do we actually make the conscious decision to change. Very rarely do we put our feet down and tell ourselves that the only things we want to be doing are the things we'd be happy other people knowing about.

I'm not saying to live your life to achieve the highest regard by others, but if you really think about it, if we can't have someone know what we're doing, there's a reason for hiding these things. In my short past, there are several things I don't like to talk about:

  • arguments I've had with people about utterly stupid things (but, of course, I realize this AFTER the argument and not during)
  • girls I've taken interest in/been involved with for absurd or superficial reasons (or no reason at all)
  • decisions I've made that go against things I typically stand for
  • the fact that I was gifted with a leather wallet that I currently use despite the material
  • the fact that I bought a leather belt after going vegan because I was too lazy to go out and find a mock leather one
  • what I think of myself, whether positive or otherwise
I'm sure there are more, but those are what I could come up with off the top of my head. The common theme among these things, however, is the fact that it's simply embarrassing, sometimes shameful.

Then I look back, and I wonder, why did I do it? Why'd I do something I'd be embarrassed to talk about? There's little to no logical reason, but there is a change to be made. That change is to be conscious of the things you do with a semi-mentality (if that even makes sense) that someone's watching what you do. Your peers know what you're doing. Then, act and be proud of what you do. (Please PLEASE note, however, that I don't encourage doing things that your friends want you to do. Do what you would do, what falls in line with your values and perspectives. Just pick the best decisions based on that rather than what other people may want you to do.)

As wild as this might sound, I challenge you to start talking about the things in your life you don't feel comfortable talking about, things you'd typically avoid discussing. Spilling your flawed actions is the most effective way of reminding yourself WHY you should do things you'd be proud of -- no matter who you're talking to. If I hooked up with girl X, I shouldn't feel bad about it. I shouldn't pretend like I didn't do it. That's not to say I should run around announcing it, but there should just be no shame. As I type this, I'm hesitant to reveal that I had a few leather goods. I'm hesitant because this post is confirming that there are relationships I've had that I don't talk about. I'm hesitant because this post is announcing that I don't live by 100% of the values I discuss in this blog 100% of the time. It's all about taking baby steps, though.

If you're going to eventually lie about it, fuck it. Don't waste your time resenting something you don't have to do.

Stay true to the world (but most importantly, to yourself),

P.S. If you have any nice pictures that are aimless but are just nice to look at, send them my way. I'd love to throw other people's material on this thing (and I'm starting to run out of random pictures. I haven't went out much recently to actually take pictures.) Thanks :)

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