The nature of deception is, you don’t know you’re deceived.
Self-deception is either:
- Believing things that are not true, and trying to fool yourself into believing things that are not true
- Not believing something that is true
Self-deception is living in this kind of alternate reality that we create for ourselves as humans on a daily basis to keep ourselves comfortable. It is very protective, and it keeps you from information that you don’t want to admit or acknowledge, simply because it’s too hard or too painful, or it’s something you don’t want to be true. And so in that way, self-deception is anything that you just can’t quite acknowledge, but that doesn’t make it any less true.
Doesn’t self-deception just make you delusional?
Self deception can make you delusional. And when you see self-deception in its most compelling, provocative form, the lies are massive. And I’m sure if you look at people in your own life, or if you look at yourself really honestly, you can see people telling you things that just aren’t true.
Maybe a friend of yours is giving you this whole rendition about a dating history they’ve had, or about their family of origin, or about their job, and you’re listening to them thinking, you’re totally full of crap, you’re absolutely delusional, and I know that you believe what you’re saying because you want to believe it’s true, but I’m looking at you as a mirror going, oh my gosh, you don’t see it, and it’s so obvious, and if I could just show you yourself for a minute, you would see that all of this is a masquerade, and if you just admitted that one little seed of truth, everything would change.
I have seen people, due to ego and insecurity, say things to try and impress others. “Oh yes… I have a house here as well as my house back home.” Or exaggerations of certain results. Things that people actually believe is true.
I used to live in an alternate reality myself many years ago. I believe it was drug induced schizophrenia at the time. (Yes me…). My BC years. I would make things up in conversations like, “Oh yeah I have an original “66 Shelby at home. I hardly ever take it out.” Or, “yeah my Corvette’s in the shop… I just use this as my station car.” One of my favorites… ” Yes I am a pilot. I have a corporate client that I fly exclusively. What kind of aircraft? It’s a Lear Jet of course. It’s freaking awesome! Maybe you can take a trip with me sometime…. he won’t mind.”
Talk about self-deception! I would actually believe my own lies after a while. A complete alternate reality. Why? I was insecure, empty, deceived, and trying to make up for my self perceived value-less existence. I was an egomaniac with an inferiority complex. I had no idea who I was. I had a long way to go from that place to even begin to discover my self… my value and worth. Years of AA to stop drinking and drugging and years growing in my relationship with God, would slowly allow the “real me” to emerge.
No more need for self-deception as a survival technique.