“Oh what a tangled web we weave/ When first we practice to deceive” Sir Walter Scott
I love me some 19th century English poetry! The drama!
Although our daily drama may not be of the plotting kind, we are often caught up inside our own ordinary deception.
Deception is a form of resistance.
This weekend I was caught in a web. I was trying to please two people and being unclear with both so that I could avoid being judged, avoid conflict, avoid hurt. Instead of trusting in my relationships and in my resilience, I defaulted to old stories that the truth of my experience and my needs, would cause irreparable hurt and disappointment. I didn't want that to happen, so I tried to get away with not revealing the whole truth (even to myself). Humans struggle to tell the truth because we fear hurting or offending other people, we fear being judged, we fear connection and we fear disconnection. When we conceal the truth in our hearts, we cause confusion. If we don’t tell the truth, but some imagined, safer version of the truth, we risk confusing the people we care most about. Confusion breeds resentment and regret, not the understanding and communion we long for.
Resistance prevents us from taking risks that will help us grow.
I think we can safely say that resistance of any kind prohibits growth. Deception is insidious because it involves other people in such a direct way. The only way to alleviate that friction and grow beyond our fear, is to practice. When you find yourself tangled in a web of deception - WELCOME THE CONFUSION! This is an opportunity to stretch your creativity muscles.
Practice these three steps:
Notice what it feels like when you aren't living truthfully in a moment and SLOW DOWN
Get curious and see if you can surface the truth in your heart
Share the truth with someone who can reflect what you are learning about your fear with compassion and care
I’ve learned ways to help myself be clear when it’s hard and scary. The goal is not to ever be stuck in resistance. The goal is to spend less time unaware of the deceptions we patterned in childhood. Transformation is a process that begins when we embrace discomfort!