Need help breaking free from addiction?
Call 24/7 for treatment options. Who Answers?

How Can I Not Lie Anymore?


I am 29 years old and I have recently come to realize that I lie just because I can. I have done some research and I believe myself to be a habitual liar. My question is, what are some things that can help me to not lie anymore? I find myself lying more than I tell the truth and sometimes it is because of attention but other times it just happens before I realize it. Lying should not be this natural and I need help in finding ways to control this problem. Thinking back, I have been doing this almost all my life and not many people ever realized that I was lying to them. Please help me because I do not want my children to pick up this habit from me.

This Disclaimer applies to the Answer Below
  • Dr. Schwartz responds to questions about psychotherapy and mental health problems, from the perspective of his training in clinical psychology.
  • Dr. Schwartz intends his responses to provide general educational information to the readership of this website; answers should not be understood to be specific advice intended for any particular individual(s).
  • Questions submitted to this column are not guaranteed to receive responses.
  • No correspondence takes place.
  • No ongoing relationship of any sort (including but not limited to any form of professional relationship) is implied or offered by Dr. Schwartz to people submitting questions.
  • Dr. Schwartz, Mental Help Net and CenterSite, LLC make no warranties, express or implied, about the information presented in this column. Dr. Schwartz and Mental Help Net disclaim any and all merchantability or warranty of fitness for a particular purpose or liability in connection with the use or misuse of this service.
  • Always consult with your psychotherapist, physician, or psychiatrist first before changing any aspect of your treatment regimen. Do not stop your medication or change the dose of your medication without first consulting with your physician.

Believe it or not, you are not alone in telling lies. Studies show that most people lie and they do so more often than you might think.

The real question is, why do people lie? The reasons are many and varied.
Sometimes people lie to protect loved ones from getting hurt, as for example as when secrets are kept for fear that the truth will cause too much pain. Some people feel a need to exaggerate the truth in order to impress others. Very often this type of lie is rooted in low self esteem. It is not unusual for young men and women to lie to one another when they begin dating. The motivating factor may be the fear of rejection if the other knew the truth.

It is not unusual for people to lie about themselves so much that they convince themselves that they are telling the truth. Self deception is as real a part of lying as misleading others. Of course, there is the lie that is told for fear of getting into trouble. This is they type of lie told by criminals. In the area of criminality, there is the lie designed to cheat others out of their money.

People rationalize their lies. Honest and decent citizens cheat on their income taxes but deny they are doing so. They reason that the government has enough money so why should they have to give more? Or they rationalize that the rich get away with not paying taxes then, why shouldn’t they?

Lies are accompanied by consequences because, sooner or later, people are caught in their lies and that can result in a loss of trust from loved ones and friends. At work it can result in being fired.

My suggestion for you is that you enter psychotherapy in order for you to learn why you lie. If your self esteem is the motivating factor behind your telling untruths then, simply trying to stop will not work. Instead, the challenge of psychotherapy will be to build your feelings of self worth.

It is a good thing that you are worried about telling lies and that you want to change it. It demonstrates that you are aware of this, are not comfortable with it and want to be a better person. Just remember that you, like everyone else, will not be perfect. Even Honest Abe Lincoln lied.

Best of Luck

More "Ask Dr. Schwartz" View Columnists

  • Mom

    I too have this do I find someone in my area that can help. This is destroying my close stand most valued relationships. I desperately want and need to address this issue. I know it will be a long term commitment on my end, but I want to be a better person and live a sober or lie feel life.

  • Derryck

    I lie all the time to my fiancé. Never to hide from what I did or to steal or cover up something I did. I lie to make me feel like more of a man. I lie not to hurt her or not allow her to be hurt. It never works, she always finds out and now she has called off the wedding due to trust issues. Of course. I have never been in love before or cared for a woman and I am 30. I smothered her in fear of her leaving me for someone else. I ruined my relationship due to my own insacurities. I wouldn't say it's insacurities, I would say self esteem in general. Since as long as I remember I have felt like I don't deserve I even be here. I don't know why. I have had horrible luck with woman and not been treated right at all throughout my childhood and early manhood. I take it out on my fiancé but I didn't know that's what was going on. I want help I need help before I loose the woman of my dreams. I know she loves me and is standing by misidentified while I deal with this. Can someone please help me? I desperately need and most of all want to be normal and live myself because I do love her I'm just horrible at demonstrating it without smothering her. I don't want to be that way cuz deep down I do trust her. Please someone help me


Call the Helpline Toll-FREE

To Get Treatment Options Now.

1-888-993-3112 Who Answers? 100% Confidential

Get Help For You or a Loved One Here...

Click Here for More Info.


Call The Toll-FREE Helpline 24/7 To Get Treatment Options Now.

100% Confidential
Get Treatment Options From Your Phone... Tap to Expand