Is it a delusion to be alive?

Self-deception: Our perception is a mirage

It is no secret that everyone lies and cheats. Usually these are relatively minor falsehoods with which one wants to make life a little easier. But what is often and readily forgotten and underestimated is the fact that we are not just fooling others. We access them very often Self-deception, tell us things that are completely fictitious from an objective point of view and then also have the audacity to be completely convinced of one's own lie and to defend it. On the one hand, the Self-deception can have positive effects and in the best case even make it more successful, but unfortunately you often get entangled deeper and deeper in our web of deception until we ourselves hardly know what we really wanted ...

➠ Content: This is what awaits you

➠ Content: This is what awaits you

Self-deception definition: what is behind the phenomenon?

Put simply, self-deception means that you are yourself lie to yourself. This works both via the classic lie that you tell yourself over and over again, but often also via a consumed perception that changes your own self-image. Frequently used Synonyms for the self-deception are therefore also whitewashing, denial of reality, illusion, wishful thinking or in extreme cases the lie of life.

The Dangers of self-deception consist primarily of losing the objective perspective on one's own behavior. Anyone who always just talks about things nicely moves further away from reality and at some point experiences a rude awakening.

If you lie to yourself all the time about your actions or decisions, you keep developing in the wrong direction and making it more and more difficult for yourself. A classic example of self-deception is this Clinging a job or a relationship. For weeks and months or, in the worst case, years, we are ready to convince ourselves that things will get better at some point.

When it comes to health, too, many people want the reality don't look in the eye and prefer to create your own image. Go to the doctor? Oh why? Do more sport and maybe eat healthier? So far you didn't need ...

True to the motto: I make the world the way I like it Facts and good advice are ignored so that one's own worldview and self-image are not scratched. In the long term, however, caution is required because of this House of cards sooner or later has to collapse.

The self-deception can thereby different shapes assume that sometimes appear completely opposite. For example, you can grossly overestimate your abilities. Renovating the living room, laying a new floor and replacing the heating? No problem, I can do everything! At the same time, however, it is also a self-deception if you do not trust yourself at all and deny yourself any talent.

But self-deception always has that purposeto perceive the environment in such a way that it becomes easier for oneself. If someone persuades themselves that they are not good at anything, this is usually done out of fear of making mistakes - and those who say that they cannot do something anyway cannot disappoint expectations.

Self-deception: We lie to ourselves wherever we can

There is almost no occasion where we don't deceive ourselves at least a little. We are constantly fooling ourselves, both professionally and privately. That might sound spectacular at first, but the effects should not be underestimated. After all, self-deception means that we have valid Facts and facts just hide it and replace it with other things that suit us better.

How bold we ourselves are lie in your pocket, show several experiments carried out, among others, by Dan Ariely, perhaps the most famous behavioral scientist of all. The study itself is relatively simple at first: the participants were asked to solve arithmetic problems of varying difficulty in writing. The decisive factor, however, was that half of the subjects read the corresponding solutions at the end of the exercise sheet. Not surprisingly, this group delivered significantly better results.

The actual test and the associated finding of self-deception came only afterwards. The participants were asked to estimate how well they would do on a second test - this time without being able to see the answers. This showed that the candidates who had previously been able to peck were convinced that they would also be better in the second round. Obviously wrong beliefBeing able to solve the tasks made the participants think they were better.

The self-deception went so far in the experiment that the group continued to overestimate itself even if a financial incentive was offered to predict its own result as correctly as possible.

It is not only their own abilities and achievements that are overestimated by most people. Even with ours Look we like to help the truth a little. Another study shows, for example, that the test persons recognize their own photo from a selection of different images most quickly if it has been made more attractive and beautiful by a computer program.

Or in other words:

Most people see themselves more beautiful than they really are.

Self-deception in others: what to do?

What we cannot admit to ourselves almost jumps at us with others: Whether Colleague, friend or family member - everyone knows someone who tends to deceive himself and who is obviously fooling himself. But what is the best thing to do in this situation?

One possibility is that open debate. Make it clear to the other person that he lives in a dream world. This can definitely work, but many people also feel personally attacked by this approach. It is a shock therapy that not everyone responds to positively. Some need precisely this impetus to overcome self-delusion, others fall into defiance.

Alternatively, you could do nothing at first and wait. However, this is extremely difficult because you want to help and open the eyes of the other to his distorted point of view in order to avert harm. However, in some cases, not meddling can be just the right strategy. If you have tried several times to bring up the subject and have failed or fallen on deaf ears each time, the self-deception must sometimes come to the hard way to be learned.

Wait for your friend or colleague to come to you and ask for your opinion or advice. It may take a while, but by now you have one good chanceto really get through to him.

Self-deception: why do we deceive ourselves?

Now, before you start to feel bad about deceiving yourself and pondering about the last time you lied to yourself, realize that the self-deception is not a conscious act. So basically you don't have to blame yourself if you fall victim to self-deception. This is one Protective reflex of the human.

This is not about physical danger, but one Threat to the psyche and above all the self-image. Everyone has a positive image of themselves first, believes in their abilities and is convinced that they can solve the tasks that lie ahead. However, if doubts arise about this, the previously undamaged self-image suddenly cracks and self-esteem threatens to suffer.

This is exactly where self-deception sets in: The difference between positive self-image and bitter reality can be very painful. This contradicting perception and we avoid the uncomfortable confrontation associated with it by bending reality and deceiving ourselves.

In some cases, this can even be an advantage. If you lie to yourself, consistently hide your own weaknesses and concentrate on the positive sides of your own personality, you can do it in many situations appear more confident and is also better at convincing others of his strengths - after all, he is firmly convinced of them himself and leaves no doubt about what he can do.

However, this benefit is usually only short-term. In the long run, you stand in the way of yourself and, above all, your own success through self-deception. At some point, self-confidence can no longer hide the fact that there is a lack of skills and that you have skilfully behind every weakness so far Whitewashing hidden, you missed every opportunity to use your potential and get better.

Self Deception Quotes: The Best Sayings

  • The most common misuse of thinking is to fool yourself and others.Ernst Ferstl
  • We are so used to disguising ourselves from others that we end up disguising ourselves.François de La Rochefoucauld
  • Some would quickly fall victim to scorn if they deceived others as much as they did themselvesPeter Sirius
  • The agony of self-knowledge is alleviated by the grace of self-delusion.Prof. Dr. Hans-Jürgen Quadbeck-Seeger
  • Everyone is lying in their pockets. If everyone really had that in their pockets, it would burst.Wolfgang J. Reus
  • Of all people, one should mistrust oneself the most.Horst A. brother
  • We all know what is good for us. And yet we do something different every day.Damaris Wieser
  • We are indifferent to our preferences; We try to deceive ourselves about our ailments until we finally regard them as excellence.Heinrich Heine

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