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Confess, Or Wait And Get Caught

By Rachelle Disbennett-Lee, PhD

I have always been curious that, when a person gets caught doing something they shouldn't, they always say how sorry they are. I wonder if the person is really sorry for what they did, or are they sorry they got caught. If the person was truly sorry for the act, wouldn't they have confessed the indiscretion before they were caught?

I read an article about Hyrum Smith, the founder of the Franklin Planner, who publicly confessed to an extramarital affair. Because of his prominence in the community, this confession cost him dearly, including being excommunicated from his church and financial losses to his business. According to the interviewer "Unlike many of today's corporate leaders, Smith confessed before he was caught. It's possible he could have ended the affair quietly, sparing his family, his company and his church a whole lot of pain." Why didn't he take that route? According to Smith, "The confession is a very important part of the repentance process."

It is very difficult to keep anything secret, and it is often more difficult to live with an action than simply confessing to it and moving on. The best way to avoid the need to make a confession is to avoid the action all together. The Katie Couric test comes into play here. Ask yourself, "Would I want to be on national television and have Katie ask me about what I did? If the answer is no, that tells me that I should avoid doing whatever it is I am considering, but in the heat of the moment we don't always think rationally and there will be times when our actions do not pass the Katie Couric test. When that happens, the next question to ask is "Do I confess, or wait to get caught?"

I don't have an answer to the question about confessing or getting caught. I once had a conversation with a lawyer who advised that a person should admit to nothing. The only trouble with this is that there will always be one person who knows what you did, and that is you. Even if no-one else finds out about your actions, you will have to live with it, and perhaps even live with the fear that someday, someone will find out.

About The Author
Coach Rachelle Disbennett-Lee, PhD, is a Certified Master Coach specializing in working with business owners and professionals in being more profitable and productive while staying sane and balanced. Coach Lee is the publisher of the award winning e-zine, 365 Days of Coaching. Her first book, 365 Days of Coaching - Because Life Happens Every Day (Universal Publisher, 2004) was named a finalist for Best Book 2004> and has a five star rating on Visit Coach Lee at her websites True Direction, Inc. Copyright

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