We’re certain of the truth in our minds.

We recognize and feel it, intuitively, and we don’t doubt its natural acceptance. Why when we are urged to know the truth we reluctant to speak it?

I believe there is something about revealing the truth that alarms people.

It seems comforting to know something nobody else does, to leave a fragment of our lives out of reach from those around us.

In doing so, however, we are shielding ourselves from the opinions of others in order to remain in the safe haven of our minds.

Actually then, are we always honest with ourselves?

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, author of Sherlock Holmes, once said, “Any truth is better than indefinite doubt.”

The truth can be intimidating, but a lie is never the solution.

I would add the truth may be hard to ascertain or overcome, though easier than a lie. It is relieving to discover the whole truth and to be freed from deception.

A lie, on the other hand, may never be forgotten and leaves its shadow in the conscience of a person. Should you lie to a close friend or relative, you risk losing their trust. A lie can be powerful and potentially irreversible. We must watch what we say because it is not always possible to take back our words.

Some people claim they would never lie, but they do admit supposedly harmless untruths periodically escape their lips.

What is the difference?

I don’t believe not telling the truth is synonymous with lying. Omitting the truth puts honesty “in hiding” to avoid revealing too much.

Lying changes the meaning of thoughts altogether. It really depends on the intentions of the person who chooses to disclose part or all of their truth.

It could be hard to conceive the ugly truth is superior to a beautiful lie. Lying purposely turns the unpleasant reality into something more palatable to the listener. I understand why people would do it.

From the youngest age, humans are capable of predicting the thoughts and reactions of others they know well. Before we say anything, we can consider what someone would think of us depending what we say. Even children feel the urge to conceal the truth to avoid getting in trouble.

Adults limit what they say to filter the opinions people form about them. As per our instincts, we say what we want people to hear.

Yet is lying really the way to do it?

As an alternative to lying or avoiding speaking the truth, we could simply think before we speak and not necessarily say everything we don’t need to. Better yet, we should be proud of our actions and lives. If that were the case, speaking the truth would not be an issue.

We should not be scared of the truth, all the while being aware. Similarly, we should be wary of what people tell us in order to separate facts from opinions and honesty from falsity.

Nevertheless, what leaves our mouths at any given moment should be the truth.

Think about it.

Gabriella Kovalenko is a resident of Sherman and an upcoming sophomore at New Milford High School.