Do You Lie About Your Career? (Here’s What I Do)

When I first started my career, I had lots of reasons to lie.

My first job interview for a freelance writing gig happened the week after I graduated high school. I’d had one or two paying writing jobs at that point, so I wasn’t completely inexperienced, but I felt like it. I honestly had no idea what I was doing. It was tempting to tell a little white lie to make myself sound more experienced and skillful, but I didn’t. From that very first phone interview, I decided to make a point of being upfront with all of my clients.

Several months later, it was tempting to tell a client I was experienced with the type of copywriting he needed. But I wasn’t–so I didn’t.

Several months after that, it was tempting to fudge my way through it when my dream client asked about my college degree (I don’t have one). But I didn’t.

And guess what? I got all three of those jobs.

Fast forward what feels like a lifetime later, and I’m no longer tempted to lie–because what I’ve accomplished through honesty and hard work is impressive enough.

If you’re starting from the bottom, it can be tempting to tell little white lies about your career. But resist the temptation. Don’t make things up–just find another selling point, something that’s true. And if you don’t get one gig, keep pushing. Eventually your accomplishments will speak for themselves.


Do you ever feel tempted to tell little white lies to make yourself sound better? Do you think it’s right?











  1. I’m still in this weird Headspace where I’m not directly lying about what I do but more like dancing around the question of what I do. I’m not ashamed of my writing journey but more like curious as to what others will think of it. Not that I should care but…… you know what I mean??

  2. This is a good reminder. Don’t say you can do something when you cannot because you’re going to find yourself in a mess. Better to not get that job that you can’t do than get the job you can’t do and wreck it and tarnish your reputation.

  3. It is tempting to tell little white lies for pretty much any aspect of life. But I’ve always found when I give in, it doesn’t settle well with either party. It’s like we both know what I said wasn’t quite right. That’s why I do my best to be completely honest (even if it comes out a little blunt sometimes). Maybe the other person will see me in a different light, but it’s better when this light is true.

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