Do you Believe in Lies? I have – and I probably still do.

Do you believe in lies? I have – and I probably still do.

This concept of “believing lies” is fairly new to me, something that I feel is just dawning as a realization.

I have believed lies about myself for a long time. I began to realize this when I noticed a strange little voice that would sneak up inside of me at some of my more vulnerable times and say things like, “Oh dear, Molly, that was a weird thing to do,” “They think you’re stupid,” “You shouldn’t have made that decision,” “They don’t like you,” etc . . . These phrases sound sort of strange all linked together but these were some of the things this voice would say to me. It said them so subtly that I went years, decades, without knowing.

This voice appears usually in my more vulnerable moments where I feel insecure and find myself second-guessing whatever I’ve done or said. It knows my insecurities and fears and it preys upon them, growing them into such big ideas or strongly rooted beliefs that I have believed dark and horrible things about myself – that I wasn’t worth anything, that I’m a failure, that I’m fooling people & I’m really a stupid, sham of a girl.

Harsh, isn’t it?

But I have a hunch that you believe things like this, too. Here’s why I think that; I had the idea to write this blog somewhere around 8 months ago & had planned to share it on a private little forum of my own. I never did. I began thinking, “No one will read it or like it, other people don’t have these voices, everyone will think it’s a stupid idea”. It took a long time, 6 months, before I realized that those were lies.

This has been the hardest blog I’ve had to write but I think it’s important, I think you and I deserve to know that this voice I hear & believe is a false one that wants me to fail, wants me to remain insecure & stumbling over myself.

I won’t do it anymore.

Now I can identify the lies fairly quickly, it seems as though they come in questions at times – like proposals to me that I can choose to believe or reject. Other times it seems like a loud voice yelling at me telling me in a confident anger how I’ve failed. I hear the voice & I stop it. I say to it (in my head & sometimes aloud) “No, that’s not true and I’m not going to believe that about myself. That’s not true and what you’re saying has no power here”. Responding that way has helped a lot, I find a lot of unreasonable guilt has left me, I feel more healthy emotionally, and my relationships are more open & honest.

I encourage you to identify beliefs you hold about yourself that aren’t true – this is no easy task as the voice has probably been speaking to you since you were a child & it’s hard to pull apart such deep-rooted lies – but you can do it & you need to.

Consider this when looking for those lies: What are your insecurities? Where are you most vulnerable? What about yourself do you treasure the most? – These are the areas I have experienced the most attack & self-doubt.

If you want to further explore this topic I highly recommend reading The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis – it is an incredible, fascinating, and brain-punching book on how Satan works upon our minds & insecurities; on how he lies to us. Read it, you’ll be blown away – Screwtape is alive and well.

What lies do you believe?

Have you considered this concept before?

What is your action plan to combat these?

Molly Keating

About Molly Keating

Hi, I’m Molly and I write for the blog here at O’Connor. I grew up in a mortuary with a mortician for a father who’s deep respect for the profession inspired me to give working at a mortuary a try.
Work at O’Connor has brought together two of my deep passions, writing & grief awareness. In 2016 I earned Certification in the field of Thanatology, the study of Death, Dying and Bereavement. I am honored to be able to speak on these taboo topics with knowledge, compassion, and a unique perspective.
I want to sincerely thank you for following & reading the blog, I hope that this is a healing place for you.

This entry was posted in Self-Help and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
  • Lori

    Molly,

    First, I applaud you for ignoring your inner voice and having the guts to post something so personal.

    Second, it has to be Satan working on the mind of a gorgeous , brilliant , funny and wonderful girl to make you feel any less than all of these adjectives.

    Finally, I think we all have a form of that voice or times when we second guess ourselves.
    You can imagine I have thought, “why did I say that?” many times.
    Your mind and inner voice can bring a great deal of anxiety over something that others have likely not given a second thought.

    Thank you for the post and the reading suggestion. I should probably come to you for reading material instead of choosing my own. 😉

    Love you!
    Lori

    • You are so sweet, Lori! You totally should read that book, but if you’re thinking it might be too dense (I really struggle with non-fiction) I recommend the daily inspirations book that they have out for him. It’s terrific. Thank you so much for your sweet response! I’m glad it connected with you.

      Molly

  • Anne Collins

    Molly
    Inner fears and listening to the lying voice of defeat and discouragement goes all the way back to the Garden of Eden and that darn Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. I’ve taken too much ownership of mine way too much of the time and allowed it to hamper my abilities and possibilities. It is part of the struggle we call life. Identifying the enemy is step one, resisting is step two. Acting on a good thing anyway is step three. Being reminded is wonderful. Thank you for not accepting the doubts as truth and posting. Thank you for doing all three! Big Hugs, Anne

    • Anne,
      I love the steps you’ve thought through. I’m still working hard on 1 & 2, 3 is a bit off in the future but I know I’m going to get there. Thank you so much for the encouragement, I’m so glad this connected with you.

      Molly

  • Jeff Turner

    Molly,

    I have fought this too. All my life. Dr. Daniel Amen of the Amen clinic has a chapter in his book “Change your Brain, Change Your Life” where he refers to A.N.T.s, automatic negative thoughts. He contends that we all have them and don’t even think to question them. You take it to the next step and not just question “are they true?” but reject them outright. Those ANTs form neural pathways that we tend to run down over and over. I have needed outside help to gain perspective and to fight the “addiction to a certain kind of sadness” (a lyric from “Somebody That I Used to Know – Gotye) that has been my company for too much of my life.

    We are complex beings, body, mind and spirit. As our friend Dan McQuoid says, it is never just the mind, just the body or just the spirit, they are all connected. One affects the other. This difficult topic you have tackled is more prevalent than we think. Thank you for taking the risk in writing and posting this for all to see. To some people this may sound crazy because they don’t find themselves thinking this way. There may come a season in their life where they do. I think your post will be helpful to anyone who experiences self doubt and a negative self image.

    Sincerely,

    Jeff

    • Jeff!
      Maybe you should write a blog post sometime soon?? I love how what you said about Dan, everything in us is so connected but we so often choose to just focus on 1 area. Thank you so much for your kind words & belief in me. Also, the ANTs sound really interesting, I’ve got to get myself into that book. I’d love to change my brain some more!

      Love you so,
      Molly

      • Jeff Turner

        Molly,

        One of the more insidious aspects of this is the inability to accept the “good things” that people say about you. Those compliments tend to bounce right off because that voice then says, “If they really knew me, they would not say a single nice thing about me.” So, not only do we believe the “lies”, we cannot believe the “truth” of other’s perceptions of us. Man, I am really messed up!

        Giving up on this for a little while…

        Jeff

  • Molly,
    Thank you for being brave and letting your inner most thoughts come to the page. As Lori noted, I’m glad you did not listen to that ego that holds us back. All of us travel this road, some realize it and some don’t, hopefully your blog will turn the switch for a few of us. Why do we feel the need to deem ourselves not worthy of achieving greatness. We all come from a source of abundant goodness, creativity and love, yet as we grow older and sometimes colder we lose focus. This concept of controlling and directing your thoughts is easier said then done, but nothing worthwhile or important is ever easy. I try and live in the now, this helps me appreciate the moment in front of me and takes me away from negative thoughts of the past or future. Do negative thoughts creep into my mind, yes, but like you I can now acknowledge them and banish them from my life of joy and gratitude. There is no destination that brings us happiness and love, it is the constant journey and the moment right in front of us that can set us free… Enjoy! Chuck.

    • Beautifully said, Chuck! I love your focus & philosophy that making the most of each moment and event is how we can be mindful of & squash negative thoughts/ideas. I love what you said about destinations, they may be the reason for the journey but they don’t lessen the importance of what we learn on the way.

      Thank you so much for your great response!

  • Carrie Bayer

    Molly, this is amazing! Thank you so much for sharing such a personal insight. I think your inner voice has been the same one in my head my whole life. I’m constantly hearing invisible voices that tell me how stupid, ugly or ridiculous I am. And I believe it. It doesn’t help that I truly do dumb things occasionally, it just fuels the voices into a mind burning inferno that leaves me exhausted & defeated. My intent is to stop listening to & believing what the voices say to me. Thank you for giving me courage & strength! XOXOX Carrie

    • I love you Carrie!
      I’m glad you pointed out that we do still do dumb things, things that DO deserve some criticism. I don’t want to cut out common sense & think that I’m never wrong but the challenge is to move past the mistake. The voices don’t let you do that, or at least their goal is to keep you as miserable for as long as possible. Thanks for introducing the practical side of this & keeping it real.

  • Ms. Fran Cantor

    Dear Molly,

    You have taken the first step of really ACKNOWLEDGE your inner voice or Sub Conscious. Then
    This is what gives your inner strength to do something that will make you understand
    the Feelings your are going thru which are “NEGATIVE”” thoughts about how we think of ourselves,
    what we are thinking at the Moment that gave us these thoughts. It happens when we lease expect
    it. So we have to “CHANGE” the thought to a “POSITIVE” one. Believe me it is not easy but that
    is what needs to be done. In order the “NEGATIVE” thought doesn’t take over. Try it, It Works!!!

    I have been listening to Dr. Amen for a few years and learn Soooo much about how our minds work.
    We have control of our thoughts and only we can “CHANGE” it. First you must “LOVE” yourself will
    help so very much, it gives you self confidence, to like yourself, this is important then you can feel the
    caring in you. It opens your Heart more. And you will start feeling good about yourself and
    Positive thinking will give you “FAITH” in yourself. You could not be doing the work of helping others
    if you were not a “GIVING” Person. Dr. Amen comes on TV on week-end try to see his program.
    There are times I get off my Positive thoughts and it takes me back. But one can learn to know when it
    Happens and change. Give yourself time to realize when it happens. You can do it!!!. Don’t be hard
    on yourself . When we care about our self, you will feel a change of confidence that you can get thru
    anything. Being good to oneself. Give yourself a “HUG” for being you & honest. Blessing to you.

    My Thoughts has always been and I live by it. “ALL WAYS BE GOOD TO “MYSELF” We all have
    a gift Loving, Caring, Thoughtfulness for OTHERS. From GOD’S Grace. You do too.

    A Dear Friend,

    “FRANNIE”

    • Thank you so much for your kind words, Frannie! I really appreciate you taking the time to read this blog & respond, it means a lot to me & I’m so glad that it resonated with you.

      Have a great weekend!

    • Thank you so much for your kind words, Frannie! I really appreciate you taking the time to read this blog & respond, it means a lot to me & I’m so glad that it resonated with you.

  • Sharon Watkins

    Hi Molly

    What a great concept to consider – again! I think we all listen to that destructive voice in our head and heart – decidedly more than we should. Even when we know where that voice is coming from, why do we pay attention and give it so much heed and let it affect our mood, our actions and our beliefs about ourselves?

    By your bringing this topic out in the open for me to consider and ponder once again, I will try harder to shut that voice out of my mind and heart, because I know it isn’t how God would have me feel about myself and others. God is love and kindness and powerful. And when we listen to His voice inside of us, then we become the same way in how we feel about ourselves and others.

    Thank you for being willing to share such personal information – you are an amazing woman for one so young. I look forward to our continued association and your sweet example and influence.

    Sincerely,
    Sharon

    • Thanks so much, Sharon. It was a really tough blog to write but I was confident that it had some power behind it. I’m glad it paid off & I really appreciate your kind words & openness to this idea. Thanks for responding!

  • Shayna Mallik

    Molly,
    Wow I love your topic. It is so true that we all have this voice that convinces us on things that are not always true. I commend you for sharing such a personal but amazing topic. Yes, sometimes we do things that deserve criticism and are stupid but even with these things I believe you always should stand behind what you do or say, usually there is truth behind everything we do, but sometimes how we express it might need editing. Thank you for sharing!!

    Shayna

    • Shayna that is so well said! You are absolutely right about self-critique & the importance of recognizing ourselves in the things we say and do. Even if I regret making a comment it is still so important to go back and analyze what prompted it, where it came from & why I would react in such a poor or insensitive way. We do have to stand behind what we say but a lot of times, for me, that means recognizing major flaws like jealousy, anger, resentment or pride.

      Thanks so much for that great insight, I LOVE it.

  • Karilyn Leslie

    Molly Girl,
    I really enjoyed reading this blog and learning something about you that I never would have guessed for myself. I’ve enjoyed watching this beautiful, bright eyed, genuine, content, peaceful creature grow and mature since you were just a wee one, and I’ve never seen this in you. I look at you and think “wow” she’s got a handle on everything!! I’m so glad you’re just like me, and hundreds of other women who struggle with “that voice.” I participated in a wonderful study with some ladies a few years ago titled, “Lies Women Believe: And the Truth that Sets them Free” by Nancy Leigh DeMoss. I found it very helpful, along with “Me, Myself, and Lies: A Thought Closet Makeover” by Jennifer Rothschild. I’ve actually picked them up over and over again just to review, and gain strength. That pesky voice somehow manages to creep back in from time to time. A dear friend of mine once said that our lives are one long train ride. The trip takes a lot of twists and turns, some highs and lows, and sometimes we just need to throw some baggage off the train. I really like the image of that in my head. Traveling along, something gets in the way, or goes awry and I pick up this suitcase and just hurl it from the train. I lighten my mental load, and keep traveling on.
    Love you sweet girl!!

    Kari

    • Kari! I’m going to have to take a look at those books. I didn’t even know they existed!
      Of course I’m screwed up! Haha! It’s that tried and true saying, “you can’t judge a book by it’s cover” – but I am trying to make my cover a little more like my insides. In church we talk about the importance of not “appearing” to be ok when you aren’t ok. Well, I almost never am and while there isn’t always a time & place to sit down & share everything I really want to become a more transparent person and have these issues in my life not be secrets but be new ways I can connect with others.

      Thank you so much for your response & the wisdom you bring to this subject. You are a beautiful & inspiring person & I am thrilled to connect with you now over this post!

  • Patricia Kolstad

    My sweet Molly
    Long ago there were times when I believed that I was “worthless, unlovable, full of sin and not redeemable.” I struggled for the longest time, and it took many years for me to come to a point in my life where I could throw off the burden of self-loathing and not listen to that voice that repeated those words in my head.

    When we make mistakes in our lives, or when someone takes the opportunity to make you feel less that you are, we tend to believe that. Why? Because if it were not true, why would they say it?

    So . . are we going to believe the lies? Yes, unfortunately, we do. And what does it take to denounce the lies? In my life it has taken time. It has taken strength, perseverance and the willingness to be the person and live the life that God intended for me to live. As I continue to move forward I realize that each day is a gift. We can wake up knowing who we are or we can let that voice tell us we are nothing. We can overcome it. For me the strength to do that came from within.

    Today, I feel a sense of complete gratitude for the life I have now, for the purpose I have now, and for the ability to know that, as Aibileen said to the wee small child in the movie The Help . . .

    You is kind, You is smart, You is important!

    Thanks, Molly. . . for your wisdom, for sharing and for the lessons we continue to learn.

    AP

    • I love you! I think the hard part about writing this was realizing that the voice is probably never going to go away. That it will be something I struggle with, like you, for my entire life. We don’t out-grow, out-smart or kill it – but we can minimize it & starve it. I love your idea of waking up with a confidence & surety of self. I don’t do that & I’m going to start making a conscious effort to wake up & begin defining myself for the upcoming day. Thank you for the great idea & as always, for your love & support.

      Love you!

  • Hi Molly –

    WOW, where do I start with my monkey mind telling me the crazy things are true. For most my life I have been pretty positive and not letting the ANTS (automatic, negative, thoughts) drive me insane. That all went out the window when Jesse Joe arrived in my life. I never really thought I was a fearful person, the first year my mind was racing with all these “what if thoughts”. My biggest fear was that I was going to drop little Jesse Joe when I was walking down the stairs. From there all the other crazy bad thoughts crept into my silly little head. Then one day my Dad said 99% of thing you worry about in life never come true. So anytime an ANT creeps into my head I let it go with a pray or a really positive thought, life the ‘GOLDEN BUBBLE”. The Golden Bubble is the glowing light of Gods protect surrounding my little boy or Lisa. Call me crazy at least I am not insane ………………… yet?

    Thanks for the words of encouragement!!!

  • Neil,
    It’s so crazy to me how capable our minds are of change. How one event or one person can change everything in our world and create a whole new set of lies or unnecessary burdens for us to bear. I’m so glad you are able to turn to prayer for peace & safety, it is such a powerful tool. Thanks for sharing your struggles with us & for being real.
    I’m so glad you found this post encouraging!

  • Amy

    Talk about a topic that hits home! I often find myself feeling less then and stupid. What could I have done better, how could I have worked harder or what was I thinking. You never want anyone to know how your feeling especially in this vulnerable state. I commend you for being so open and honest with your life experience. It gives me the strength and courage to stand up to the feelings and know that I am better then that. I am definitely going to get your book recommendation. Always looking for self help and awareness. Thank you for being such an amazing courageous woman.
    Amy

    • Amy, thank you so much. I feel so much relief in knowing I’m not alone in this & that even power-house women like you have those moments. Thanks for taking the time to read this & be such an encouragement. I hope you enjoy the Screwtape Letters – I’d love to talk to you about it if you get around to reading it!

  • Molly,

    Insecurity and fear alway seek residence where they are not welcome. I believe their presence in our lives is to make our faith in ourselves stronger and more defined. When you meet up with fear and insecurity in the future, thank them for their visit. Thank them for their role in making you a stronger woman. Thank them for helping you appreciate and embrace your power and importance to the world. Thank then with a smile and then show them the door out of your life. Peace Always! Chris

    • A great perspective, Chris! I completely agree that we can grow stronger from these experiences. My problem for so long was not identifying the feelings for what they were – fears, lies, irrational thoughts, etc . . . Knowing what they are now I am able to find strength as I turn them down where before they crippled & weakened me.
      I’m a big fan of the calm, cool & collected way you talk about dealing with them. It’s something I’m going to try out.
      Thanks Chris!

      • Christopher Iverson

        Molly,

        I believe that fear, lies, irrational thoughts, etc…they know that their is “no room in your inn.” You are a very powerful woman. Continue the embrace! Peace Always! Chris

  • Shasta

    Great post, Molly. I have felt that way too, and it surprises me that you have! I think it’s important to tell yourself positive things whenever those voices come up. I think that when u start believing what you tell yourself, you become it eventually, whether good or bad.

    • Absolutely! We really do have to filter how & what we think about ourselves by objectively asking if there is truth in the allegation. I’ve also realized that a lot of the negative things I’ve believed about myself I have turned on other people and unfairly judged them.
      Thanks for responding to my post, I’m really glad that you found truth in it for yourself & made me think a little bit more about all this!