This is Tannaz Hosseinpour and welcome to Minutes on Growth. I always want my words to come from a place of clarity and true self-reflection hence why it has been a while since I last recorded. On this episode I want to discuss anxiety, in particular anxiety that is caused by lying.I want to share a very personal story with you. I have a couple of tattoos, and my father who is quiet traditional in this one aspect, never really approved of them. However, I have this one tattoo on my shoulder that I got when i was 15 and have since hid it from him (thats more than a decade) Over time he has seen my other tattoos, so it wasn’t as if he did not know about their presence all together, its just that he did not know about this one. Throughout these years, every single time we would go swimming or on vacations at resorts, I would have to take the extra step to pack a swimming suit that covered it. Or when I would go out with him, to ensure that I wore long sleeves. sometimes even in the summer, and all of this would make me feel anxious. Those close to me were aware of this and would constantly ask me what the difference between this tattoo and the rest are. I never really had an answer, I just felt that it was different and this difference was causing me a lot of anxiety.
This summer my brother was visiting me for about 2 months, and during this time, I traveled for a few days and he remained with my father. When I returned, he came up to me out of the blue and said ” By the way, Dad knows about all your tattoos so you can stop hiding them”. At that moment, hearing those words, I felt this wave of anxiety drowning me. I got super nervous and started rambling about how my father must have been disappointed and worried about how he would react with me. Mind you, I’ve been living alone for almost a decade, I have more own career and life, but at that moment i sounded like the 15 year old girl who had just gotten that tattoo. I remember when I did get it, I ingrained this idea into my head that if my father ever saw it, he would think less of me. So that childhood belief stayed with me, and every time I would think about the tattoo, I would act like the 15 year old Tannaz.
Anyways, as i was panicking, My brother was just staring at me, looking confused and thinking to himself why I was acting like this. He couldn’t understand where i was coming from..and truthfully now that i think of it, i don’t even understand where I was coming from. I had taken this one tattoo on my shoulder and had made it into such a big deal in my own head, and i had lived moments, days feeling anxious when I was in my father’s presence, when all this time he knew about it. The moral of the story is, when you’re lying, hiding a secret or you think you’re hiding a secret, ask yourself, by doing so, does it make you feel anxious? If so, is it worth it? Is the reality of being honest as bad as you think it is? The answers are personal to you, but for me, I just wasted so many days feeling negative and anxious for absolutely no reason. It’s important to every once in a while look into our lives, and re-evaluate the factors that make us feel anxious. Can we do something about them? I am grateful to my brother for doing what he did. It’s interesting to notice how children are more comfortable with being honest and how that impacts their life’s level of ease. As we age, we tend to over complicate things and over-think, when we really should just take a moment and try to live life like a child with honesty, courage and simplicity.
Thank you for listening and i hope to talk to you all soon,