I used to work with a 23-year-old woman who claimed to be the following: EMT (who assisted the coroner in many autopsies and helped to solve homicides), Registered Nurse, Apache helicopter pilot, Marine, OSHA inspector and forklift driver. She glossed over the fact that she didn’t have a college degree, which almost all of these occupations require.

Why would she say this stuff? Perhaps she felt that she hadn’t achieved enough in life yet and embellished. Most of her lies were harmless enough. However, when she lied about being a forklift driver, she put a lot of people at risk; her first day on the lift, she ran into a rack, dislodged material and put everyone in the fallout zone in danger.

Why do people lie? There’s the situation above, where someone feels that her/his life isn’t interesting enough, so new accomplishments are fabricated. People also lie to avoid punishment. Everyone who has watched an Investigation Discovery Channel show knows that the murderer is going to lie about involvement in the crime. Not many want to spend life in prison, after all.

There are also the lies to protect another’s feelings. For example, your 90-year-old grandmother shows up at the barbeque in Daisy Dukes and a tube-top and asks how she looks. You’re going to tell grandma that she looks great (at least I would). She’s happy with your compliment, goes about her day feeling good and no one is harmed.

Out of all the lies that people tell, the most detrimental are the ones we tell ourselves. Sometimes we lie to ourselves to preserve our egos. “That guy broke up with me because he couldn’t handle my superior intellect.” Sure, maybe. Or maybe it was because you flung a wineglass at his sister’s head during Thanksgiving dinner. “She’s avoiding me because she only likes bad boys.” Or, watch me now, it was because you broke into her home and arranged bouquets of flowers in every room.

And what about the lies we tell ourselves regarding our own capabilities? What about the lies that cause us to fail because we didn’t even try in the first place? These are self-fulling prophecies of the highest order. As soon as we are too afraid to try because of the fear of failure, we are giving credence to our own internal lies. That cute barista might say “no” if you ask her/him out – okay, so get a new coffee joint – but s/he might say “yes” and on your 50th wedding anniversary, you’ll have a pretty story. I may have a bit of an obsession with him, but like good ol’ Ben Franklin said, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.” Basically, don’t tell yourself that you’re going to lose the game before the sides are even picked.

Chances are, someone in your life will lie to you. The one person you can count on not to lie to you is your Bourke Accounting associate. If you’re on the verge of bankruptcy, your Bourke Accounting specialist won’t sugarcoat it. However, your Bourke Accounting specialist will offer you concrete advice in order to help you pick up the pieces. Likewise, if you inherit a lot of money, your Bourke Accounting expert will softly guide you away from investing in that new restaurant that only serves liver-flavored vodka and ketchup-infused pancakes.

Come see us any time. Our number is 502-451-8773 and don’t forget to visit our website at www.bourkeaccounting.com. See you soon!

Written by Sue H.