Sunday, October 26, 2008

Little White Lies


Ah, there's been a lot lately. It's like, I'm at that point when I've started having to censor a little bit of what I say so that I don't completely sabotage it before there's anything "real" to actually talk about. My blog is common knowledge, to everyone in my life. What I really want to say may be premature before I say it, so I've chosen to be a bit more discerning with recent topics, and that's fucking frustrating.....caution isn't one of my strong points. Either in action or warning.

I've never been afraid of being open. It's just what I do. I came out of the womb with bleeding- heart-sewn-to-arm and since then, it's grown into it's own appendage I've gotten used to having. When I meet new people, I spill; I say too much, I say enough, I leave little to the imagination. I like to blame it on my desire to exude "warmth." If you will.
When I go on a job interview it isn't uncharacteristic for me to say, "Well, I'm really bad at staying in one place for an extended period of time....so, just thought I'd give you a heads up."

Honesty isn't a choice, it just is. The problem is, sometimes when things marinate for awhile in your mind, what was truthful at the beginning of the thought, changes into a different truth by the end of the thought and people have a hard time keeping track of that.....it's the human saga, or my human saga titled Wishy-Washy.

The other problem, most people don't take well to the actual truth.

Does that make any sense? Or does that sound neurotic, or is it neurotic to say, "does that sound neurotic?" I think so.

I digress......

So much of the time we're constantly full of WHITE LIES, little harmless "factions" to make us sound more; interesting, smart, intriguing, worthy, credible, deserving.....etc. We add an extra week to our internship on applications; we turn one day of volunteering into "experience doing charity work." Rather than saying from the beginning that we usually bail before we can fail, or once we start dating I'll be exercising my Wandering Eye, we impersonate what we WANT our truths to be for other peoples satisfaction.

I don't think it's that we want to be liars. And really I don't think it's because we don't believe we're enough as is. We fabricate because we want to be accepted, like my parents said, "you're only lie if you are unable to tell the truth."
Unfortunately, I think we've created a society that enables the inability for people to be truthful, from the start.

When you do on a job interview they don't really want to hear the truth. They don't want to hear that you'd rather be designing shoes or taking care of your babies at home. Instead they want to hear you lie and say, "my intention is to grow with the company." They want to hear buzz words and bumbling overcompensation pleas.

Dishonestly doesn't stop at the work place, but is expected in social situations and human interaction. Politeness has taken precedence over honesty, even if the honesty isn't hurting anyone. Honesty can be annoying, threatening and complex if it's foreign to yours and rocking the boat can be scary if there's a shitload of passengers who can't swim.

I saw an interview with Bon Jovi once ( oh yeah, I totally went there and am quoting Bon Jovi.....) and he said when writing songs he is "as close to the truth as possible." My wise folks took this piece of JohnBON wisdom and instilled the same in me....pretty sure I could have quoted Shakespeare and said, "The truth will set you free" but hey, Jersey boys deserve a little play every now and then too and I believe what he said is what most of us are missing in our day-to-day lives.

The little white lies aren't harmful to anyone but ourselves. They minimize our OWN truths and give the power to those we're falsifying for.... as if someone else's truths were more valuable than our own. The more we're worried about saying the right thing to appease, the more we tell ourselves we aren't justified in our own "rightness" and thus the acceptance of our half-truths continues.....

It's OK to be clueless or confused from time to time, it's OK to have no fucking clue how you're going to "make it" and it's ok to tell people so. It's OK if you've decided to acknowledge you're feelings for someone and it's terrifying and it's OK if you're a little bit timid about diving head first into someone/something new. It's ALWAYS OK to feel exactly how you're feeling and if you're the only person there to validate those feelings then that's fucking OK too.

Whatever you were thinking about "factioning", half-truthing.....lying about today....it's more than OK to just, tell the truth.









24 comments:

jaime. said...

This is a great examination of why and how we should remember to examine and cherish our own truths.

"They minimize our OWN truths and give the power to those we're falsifying for.... as if someone else's truths were more valuable than our own." So well-said! Thanks for the reminder that the things in which I believe are central to who I am and I should not sacrifice those things for anything.

readsalot said...

Not only do those little white lies hurt us, they can also hurt others. There is never anything little or white about a lie to someone that deserves the truth.

Ashley Lynn said...

I totally agree it is too easy to hide behind little white lies. I found your blog through another and I LOVE IT by the way I tagged you!

just me said...

I hate the job interview bullshit.

Most the time I couldn't be LESS enthusiastic about the job, but unless you make it seem like you're JUST IN LOVE with idea of sitting in a cubical all day, they won't hire you.

It's crap.

well-intentioned heartbreaker said...

terrific post, chelsea.

and so true.

we all deserve to not only tell our truth, but hear the truth from others. it might sting, it might even blow you out of the water, but it means a lot more than hearing what 'should' be said. those little white lies mean nothing.

Ben said...

Naturally my Résumé says that I finished my degree, when in fact I didn't (well, it actually just lists the course and what years I was there for, the rest is assumed).

Totally with you on the job interview front. I am terrible at all that bullshit. If I'm not actually enthusiastic then there is no way in hell that I'm about to feign enthusiasm (at least not convincingly. That mostly ends with the interviewer saying they appreciate my honesty, then they go and give the job to someone else.

Most of my white lies are probably ones of politeness. "Hmm, yeah, that's interesting" creates a lot less problems than "what are you, a retard?!".

Surfergrrl said...

I agree to some extent. I guess we are sort of trained this way. but imagine if we went up to someone we knew casually, and they happened to be going through a difficult time, but at the same time they wanted to not burden anyone or seem like a downer. So you say to them, hey joe, how are you? They might tell a little white lie and say they are doing fine, how are you, etc. In a way, no one wants to hear their problems. So I think things like that are the basis of little white lies. Does that make any sense? ha ha

Jessica said...

Haha, I love the picture on this post! I love that your so honest, it's great to read your blog.

Valley Girl said...

The truth is why I can sleep at night. =)

sequined said...

I try not to lie, though I frequently try not to tell the whole truth. Ha. I also sometimes have to throw a more exciting ending onto an anecdote I can see isn't going to end well. Because I hate telling stories that bomb.

kilax said...

I love this post. I feel like I am too honest sometimes, but what's wrong with that? Nothing!

Emily said...

LOVE this post. Its so true, and I never even thought about it until I read your post. Why do we always say "it is better to tell the truth" when that itself is a lie?! If we said ONLY the truth, the world couldn't handle it. Very good topic!

sid said...

There are certain things that I have no problem being honest about. In the work place I try to be diplomatic. But I am trying to be more honest about how I feel about certain things. When I'm not okay I'll say so.

SingErin13 said...

You have great great great music taste

and that is def. not a lie!

Melain said...

*sigh*

I totally do that. I guess we all do.

Meika said...

When I am open and tell people the truth they call me a bitch. That's what sucks. I am a very honest and open person, and I talk before I think. And you have to be a certain type of person to understand I'm not being mean, I'm just being honest. Honesty would never work in this world. Its a sad truth but society has been built on lies.

Meika said...

Oh yeah I gave you the Bookworm award on my page!

Aleta said...

I can't help but tell the truth, because otherwise, it shows on my face and in my voice. I could never play poker!

Besides, white lies are difficult to keep track of and they tend to multiply and mutate. When I find someone who tells those types of lies too often, it makes me question the validity of what they say in the future and that's sad...

Miss Marie said...

Ugh, I know what you're saying about the career world. I always HATED interviews because I knew I would have to lie through the whole thing. When all I really wanted to say was: No, I don't really care about your daycare. I'd rather be home working on my dreams than wiping snot off your kids' faces. If your kids get me sick because you can't stay home to take care of them, I'm calling in. Don't expect me to show up for them when you can't. Nope, I'm not going to be here for 10 years...

Now I work for myself so luckily I don't have to do those horrible lie-fests anymore.

Chelsea Talks Smack said...

Ashley lynn- Thanks!

Meika- Thank you!!

bloggingbarbie said...

chels- you never cease to amaze me with your writing talent, and teh ability to provoke thought in others.

you, my dear, are awesome. and that, is the honest truth. xo.

Keep moving forward said...

I so agree with you. I used to ask my sister to help with my resume, but I have just started to do them by myself because I couldn't stand how she used to try to make me sound..well not like me. In job interviews I just want to tell them, well I really only need to work here until I find something better.

Sassy Molassy said...

I just watched this week's grey's online so I may be a little more emotional about it, but this was a great post. I am pretty honest a lot of the time and find that it comes off as abrasive and scary to others. It's hard b/c I don't bullshit. I mean sure, here and there you have to exaggerate things for your own comfort once in a while, but usually I'm a no frills, truth be told kind of girl.

I wish more of us could feel empowered to be honest and open and unafraid of letting our weaknesses out. After all, if we're being untruthful to others, we're ultimately being untruthful to ourselves.

Great post!

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