As I sit here writing this blog, I am very clear about the life I have, the life I have had, and the life I want to have. I have been married and divorced three times, I am currently single, my beautiful fluffy companion Joia – my family – passed away this week, and if I am being brutally honest, I am feeling heartbroken, lonely, and a little lost. As I reflect on my life to this point, much of it has been based on lies. Lies I have told myself and lies I have told others. I am crystal clear that right now it is time for honesty.

I had a meeting with a wonderful lady this week, and we were being very honest with each other. She was telling me about her stuff, and the subject of marriage came up. She asked about my marital status, and so I told her. She is a very upfront person, and so when I admitted to having been married three times, she did not hide her surprise. She laughed and said jokingly, ‘you must be a slow learner!’ In that moment, I was very tempted to fall back into lies, justifications, and deceit to make myself look better than I perceived I was by her. Then I caught myself and instead opted for uncomfortable honesty.

The reality is that much of my life has been made up of lies to make myself look better, justify why things haven’t turned out the way I wanted, and to avoid being judged and unloved. The biggest deceit of all, and the one that started the whole cascade and web of lies was the one I was telling myself, that I wasn’t worthy of love unless I performed, achieved, and looked and behaved a certain way. You see, my greatest problem was I didn’t love myself and so the lies became necessary to convince myself and others that I was a worthy person. Can you see how dangerous this is?

If you can’t, let me explain to you, from bitter experience, how destructive lying can be. The belief that I wasn’t good enough or worthy of love was the most destructive lie of all. It affected everything I said and did. It stopped me from trying things that could have made a big difference in my life and the lives of others. It caused me to behave in a way that was not really me. It pushed me to do things for the wrong reasons, leading to more pain and angst. It affected how I interacted with people and moved me into romantic connections for all the wrong reasons. It was my errant belief that being in a relationship would help me feel better about me. Another lie. That is an inside job, and it is not fair to put that responsibility on another person or a relationship.

When the lady I was speaking to this week said to me, ‘you must be a slow learner!’ She was right. I was very slow to learn about the lies I was telling myself and my partner at the time. You see, I had been lying to myself for so long, I started to believe what I was saying. I lied to myself that everything would be okay if I could just hide the real insecure and flawed me. I lied to my partner about how I was really feeling because I thought she would leave me if she knew the truth. Yep, a recipe for disaster, and I experience that disaster in three marriages.

I have lied to myself and others to justify lack of progress or achievement, when the reality was, I just wasn’t doing what was required. I didn’t want anyone to know that, becasue my ego couldn’t handle it. So, I kept lying and stayed stuck. I have lied to, or withheld my true feelings to people, because I didn’t want to hurt their feelings, or again, feel judged. All this did was prolong the inevitable pain and increase its intensity when the truth finally surfaced. Again, a recipe for disaster which has manifested in my life on many occasions.

Why am I telling you all this? Because, it’s time for honesty. Do I enjoy sharing on a public platform that I am a flawed liar? No, but let me tell you, a weight has lifted off my shoulders. When you replace lies with honesty, it’s like shovelling snow off your driveway. It’s no fun, but when it’s done, you have a clear path forward. Honesty will clear the barriers to your progress, your communication, and your relationships. Honesty will make you more relatable, more loving, and more inspiring. The most important thing about honesty, is that it will build you from the inside and give you a strength that will propel you through your life.

In my podcast this week, called Once you have you, I speak with Ise Ellsworth. Ise, aka Kiko Ellsworth, Emmy Award winner and very successful actor, found himself spiralling, despite his success. Why? The lies he was telling himself and others about who he really was. Once he decided it was time for honesty and he discovered the real man, everything changed for him. That is why he says, once you have you, you have everything.

I am not going to sit here and call you a liar. I am going to ask you to think about the things you say to yourself and others and then ask yourself, are they giving me what I really want in life? If the answer is yes, celebrate and keep going. If the answer is no, then, maybe it’s time for honesty.