5 Lies People Tell During The Holidays!

I admit I am a romantic Christmas movie junkie. The corny-ier the better. In my effort to offer you #HolidayHelp, today I talk about a common theme in many holiday movies: lying. In fact there are five lies people tell during the holidays...and after the holidays are over. 

Even if I can predict, which I usually can, every turn and twist, I still love romantic Christmas movies. My husband usually racks up major brownie points between Thanksgiving and New Year’s watching at least one a week with me. 

As a romantic Christmas movie connoisseur, I have noticed they all have similar themes:  

  • A single person makes a deal with another single person to pretend to be a couple during the holidays. 
  • A couple or family on the verge of irreversible destruction pretends to be a picture perfect couple just for the holiday.
  • Some character has a secret and keeping the secret has caused—or is causing—a rift in one or more relationships. 

It seems that people would rather lie than face the truth.

Are you one of them?

It makes for great television, but I can’t help but get emotionally drained as I watch these characters dig themselves in deeper holes as they try to cover their tracks. The plot always unravels as the characters forget the lies they told or try to live up to the lies and just can’t. 

5 Lies People Tell 

  • Blatant—This is the lie we know the most. It is purposely telling an untruth. 
  • Lies of Omission—This is witholding information or leaving out important details. 
  • Exaggeration—This is over-emphasizing the result, effect, or impact of something.
  • Minimizing—This is downplaying the result, effect, or impact of something
  • Not correcting error—This is knowingly letting someone believe something incorrect.

The Trouble With The Truth.

What is so wrong with telling the truth?

A pastor once said “The truth will set you free, but it’ll make you mad first.”

The trouble with telling the truth is that it’s uncomfortable, vulnerable, and has unknown consequences.

Lies are comfortable. Lies show us as we want to be seen—invincible. The consequences of lies are known. 

We lie because we think by doing so we can control the outcome of a situation. The truth pries control out of our hands. We are at the whim of truth. We can’t predict the outcome of truth and that is the problem with truth. 

Or so we think. What would they really think if we just told the truth?
I don’t have money to buy lots of gifts.
I am angry that my loved one abandoned me.
I am ashamed that I was abused.
I lost my job.
My business isn’t successful.
I am in debt up to my eyeballs.
I get depressed during the holidays.
The kids, I had such an ordeal conceiving, are driving me crazy.
What truth are you not telling? 

From my years of watching of Christmas movies, the best part of those movie is when the truth comes out!

Ok, ok, in all fairness, the exact moment the truth is revealed is usually filled with anger, tears, and shouting. But that isn’t the truth’s fault. It’s the lie’s fault. 

The moment the truth is revealed is also the moment everyone realizes, not just that they have been lied too, but also the depth and breadth of the lie. 

In a split second, you are face to face with the fact that the people you care about have lied to you. That is where the anger comes from.

It is also a moment, when characters realize that they didn't know something. We like to think we know everything. That we are above being duped. And the truth reminds us that we are NOT invincible.

Think about it. Which is worse? Losing your job or telling your wife you lost your job 3 months after the fact? The truth, though not ideal, isn’t really the culprit. Lying is the culprit. 

Two Guarantees In Truth.

1. The truth will always come out. It can’t be hidden forever. 
2. It will lead to freedom…eventually.

After the truth has come out, characters are free to really live their lives to the fullest. No more covering their tracks. No more pretending. I am not saying there are not consequences, or amends that need to be made. But the movies always end with the character trying to convince those they hurt of the truth instead of a lie. 

I know life isn’t a well scripted (or in some cases poorly scripted) movie. But there are lessons we can learn.  For me, the real magic in Christmas movies is finding the courage to do what’s right…especially when it is inconvenient. That is what BRAVE Communication is all about.  This holiday, be honest with yourself and others. It really is the gift that keeps on giving.

Read all the #HolidayHelp posts here

What is your favorite holiday movie and why?


  1. These are great! I'm going to use these whenever. Especially love points 1 & 3. I mean, thank you via M&Ms, it doesn't get better than that. :-)

  2. I can be prone to minimizing and ommission sometimes. Usually because I'm concerned about hurting people's feelings. It's something I'm growing in and getting better at though and I've found that even when saying things that could potentially be received as hurtful, when I'm straight about it and allow myself to own that truth, surprisingly, the result is often far better than all the negative scenarios I'd built in my head about what would happen.

  3. 'we have these internal dialogues that no one can hear except us. In our streams of consciousness, we draw conclusions based on our experiences in life. Those conclusions grow into beliefs. Our beliefs dictate our expectations. Our expectations morph into our norms. From our norms we make demands on ourselves and others.'

    Man, this is one potent paragraph. I've gotta chew on these words awhile. This is a great post.

  4. Micah, thanks for commenting I think that paragraph is at the heart of all the relational conflict we have with others. It is definitely why I went into the business. By the way, I've read several "potent paragraphs" in your writings too! I can't wait to read some more.

  5. Micah,

    "when I'm straight about it and allow myself to own that truth, surprisingly, the result is often far better than all the negative scenarios I'd built in my head about what would happen."

    Our imagination is a powerful tool. Imagining what could wrong is the prime reason we are tempted to lie in the first place. Usually it isn't as bad as we imagine. And even if it is, being honest with yourself and others will take your farther than a lie ever will.

  6. Came back and read this one again! Gleaned some insight I hadn't noticed before! Thank you for sharing your gift with us!

  7. Awesome post, Julia! Who likes or enjoys being lied to? Not me! Not anyone I know! If we'd just think about this before we utter a lie ... if others would just think about this before they do. The truth is always, always, always the best route to take. Unfortunately, like you so beautifully pointed out, it's not always the easiest route - or so it seems at the time - so people lie. In the end (as you said), the truth always comes out and the situation is made so much worse because of the lie. So really, lying is NOT the easiest route to take ... it's the longest and most difficult route anyone can ever choose to take. Thank you for these great reminders! They're something we all need to keep in mind!

  8. These are some great ways to say, thank you. I especially liked the first one!

  9. Dan. I want to see a picture when you do it!

  10. I figured you would like the M&M route since you are quite public about your chocolate love!

  11. I make sure to send you a picture when I do it:)

  12. Hey, now you can never go wrong with chocolate. ;-)