THINGS ABOUT HONESTY I KNOW TO BE TRUE

We all lie; at least I’m being honest about it.

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We’re all raised to understand the difference between what’s right versus what’s wrong in very clear black and white terms. From the 10 Commandments in the Bible to the famous fable of George Washington cutting down the cherry tree, it’s undeniable that lying falls unanimously under things we shouldn’t do. So it’s no surprise that when asked, “What’s the most important trait that you look for in a friend or significant other,” honesty often finds itself at the top of the list.

We say that we want people to be honest with us because we want to feel like we can trust them. We put so much emphasis on honesty, but rarely seem to be completely honest ourselves. That is because everyone is capable of lying, and unfortunately we all do it. It’s a contagious part of humanity. Some of us fib infrequently, while others spew lies as if it’s our full-time job.

We lie to make life easier at the time; however, lies only cause pain in the long run, either to the people around us or to ourselves. It’s undeniable that everyone has been or will be hurt at some point due to a secret, distorted truth, lie and/or the discovery of something that should have been talked about openly. When lied to, we are left hurt because dishonesty undermines the relationship, breaks trust and is the opposite of intimacy. That means that instead of feeling secure in the fact that we know someone and are known by them in return, we now have lingering doubts about them and no longer feel completely safe in the relationship. We are often left to wonder, if they lied once, will they lie again…are they lying now?

But despite the hurt felt when being on the receiving end of a lie, we continue to cast lies into the universe. We continue to lie to others in an effort to temporarily avoid painful situations and hide our feelings because many times being honest means willingly enduring unpleasant realities that we’d rather avoid. Lying is the weak way out.

However, good news is that just like lying is contagious, honesty is just as contagious.

We need to stop underestimating honesty, and start respecting the people who are honest; they are the brave ones. It’s not an easy thing to do; otherwise we’d do it all the time. We all know the importance of honesty, but aren’t reminded nearly enough. So let’s take a look at a few reasons why being honest is preferable to lying any day of the week.

Honesty builds strength of character that allows us to be of great service to God and others.

Honesty is vulnerable. It is our deepest thoughts, which are not always pretty. It is self-respect.

Honesty is freedom; lies and deceit are suffocation.

Honesty builds trust overtime. Once trust is lost, it becomes a much more difficult journey to salvage it.

Honesty is unselfish. It’s putting others before yourself. It can ruin relationships, but at the benefit of showing a person who they have the opportunity to be.

Honesty promotes authenticity. Honesty is a reflection of your own thoughts and feelings. If you want people to know who you really are, be honest in your self-expression.

Honesty is essential to strong and loving relationships. The security of knowing that your partner is being open and truthful eliminates fear and worry.

Being honest may mean difficult talks and awkward confrontations, but it also means better relationships with others and yourself. Remember: People are usually more hurt by the concealment of the truth than by the truth itself. Everything thought to be gained or avoided by being dishonest simply isn’t worth it. Lies always have a way of catching up to us, even if it’s the lies we tell ourselves. You owe it to others and yourself to speak the truth. Just be honest; it’s one of the most treasured values in society.

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