We’ve all been there – convinced by something we heard and after a little internal debate, jumping to conclusions. That false story we believed, the one that happened to be not so factual, was considered an innocent white lie. The little fantasies that we created out of nothing but our imaginations were simply considered harmless fun. These fictions the world accepted were in fact influencing our decisions and changing the course of our lives.
Given the beauty behind our innocence, we take for granted the lasting impact these thin fictions have on how we treat ourselves and each other. This belief in fabricated stories, however slight or trivial, has the power to linger and shape our individual and collective narratives. We have unknowingly been manipulated by stories of false promise and unwise advice. At some point in our lives we have blindly accepted what we’ve heard and this has resulted in irrational decisions which could have easily been avoided.
Think of the bigger picture and the many people in the world who have actually dropped their lives and chosen to live a lie. Small talk has taken on another form in our times. The dynamics of conversation are changing and we are all affected in one way or another. Whether it’s gossip or fake news, its intimidating power over us is both alarming and hard to ignore. Our tech-driven world of wonder has been making way for less careful judgement and a cognitive disconnect between fact and fiction.
This doesn’t have to be however, we have the ability to take control and not allow ourselves to be taken captive by the fictions that don’t benefit us. By keeping a clear head, we are better enabled to make informed decisions and identify the little lies. The moment we start to become mindful of what we say and what we believe, our conversations become devoid of miscommunication and confusion. We owe it to ourselves to become adept at distinguishing truth from fiction. We need to develop intellectual inquiry and employ investigative skills to inform our decisions.
Most often these fictions take a much lighter tone but can have lasting repercussions. We may have been taught valuable life lessons or fables that seemed far-fetched and ridiculous, but these stories have taught us important ways to guard ourselves and be mindful of our behavior. Our reliance on these lurid tales and passing fictions can grant us comfort and give us strength, for example the tale of the Tortoise and the Hare.
Our lives are an amalgamation of facts and fictions. We may have encountered false stories or believed in impossible feats, but it’s the truth that should inspire and drive us. Fictions can be both entertaining and comforting, but we should remain vigilant and be wary of the stories that we believe. It’s time to let go of the lies big and small, and encourage each other to take responsibility for the words and actions that spark joy.