As you try to figure out what motivated you to lie, set aside the urge to blame your partner for your actions. It was your decision to lie and to do whatever it was that you were then trying to hide.
What will help you move past this is to learn from your lying and make clear choices about what's next for you and your marriage.
#2: Forgive yourself.
No matter how justified you feel about lying, you might also feel remorse and even guilt or shame. Your guilt will not heal the damage to trust in your marriage. Shame will do nothing but push you and your mate further and further apart.
It is healthy to take responsibility for your lying and actions. It is NOT healthy or helpful to continually beat yourself up for what happened.
Take steps to forgive yourself. Yes, you might choose to make amends with your mate in specific ways, but, you also need to do some internal healing.
Remind yourself that forgiveness is not about saying the lie (and action) was okay. Instead, forgiveness is about owning what happened and then loving yourself enough to learn from it and let it go.
#3: Say “I'm sorry” from the heart.
When you do talk to your partner about the lie or admit that you lied, go prepared. Be clear within yourself about why you lied and-- in advance-- decide what you want to say to your mate.
When you say “I'm sorry,” say it from the heart. Be open to listening to how your spouse feels relative to your lying (and actions). This might be difficult to hear, but it's important for you to be present to where your partner is and what he or she wants.
If your mate asks you to make amends to him or her in specific ways, really consider what is being asked of you. Don't immediately say “yes.” Instead, let your partner know that you want to make a full commitment to what you are agreeing to.
Many times, people say “yes” just to appease their spouse and when an actual situation arises, they break the agreement because they were actually unwilling or unable to follow through with it.
Rachel tells her husband that she's sorry for lying to him and she truly means this. She also finds the courage to admit to her husband that she has been having an emotional affair.
She decides to take a week away from both her husband and James to make some decisions about her future. She doesn't want to cheat or to lie again to her husband, but she's not completely certain that she's 100% committed to her marriage anymore.
When Rachel returns, she hopes to be clearer about what is next for her.
#4: Make re-building trust your new priority.
If you hope to repair the damage caused by your lie, it is vital that you make re-building trust a priority.
This probably means that you are more transparent with your spouse than before. Give him or her greater access to your private life in order to prove that you are trustable.