[March 17, 2023] I was recently asked by one of my readers what was the most important rule in your book, 55 Rules for a Good Life, and why. My answer was easy. Never lie, cheat, or steal. The reason is that it is an excellent starting position to straighten out your life. And, of these, never lie is the most crucial of all.
RULE 3: Never Lie, Cheat, or Steal. And do not needlessly tolerate those who do. The most fundamental bond among humans since the beginning of time is trust. When we lie, cheat, or steal, we break that bond. We are betraying others, and we are corrupting ourselves in the process. You will lose the race to success if you lie, cheat, or steal. Never, ever betray your brothers (or sisters).
Why I made it rule “3” instead of rule “1” is not an accident, but I wanted to set the stage for the other 54 rules. So, never lie, cheat, or steal. It is helpful never to allow yourself to do these wrongs because in doing so, you betray others. Never would be best, especially never lie.
For example, it is not always a straightforward thing to do. You don’t get to tell the truth as a weapon; that’s not the truth, that’s a partial truth masquerading as truth to use as a weapon. It’s beneficial to discipline yourself not to use your language in a manipulative manner. It doesn’t work. Manipulation is a terrible medium to long-term life strategy.
Your life will become much more straightforward, less anxiety-provoking, and more exciting and adventurous if you say what you think, or more importantly, don’t say those things you know to be untrue.
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