Honesty, instead of eggshells.

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This is a difficult one. It sounds easy, but it’s really not. Just be honest. Just tell the truth. The truth will set you free. How many times have you heard these words? And yet, it’s such a struggle for so many people. This lesson has appeared several times in the last few weeks. It has tested my strength and courage; but when I stepped up to meet the challenge instead of hiding from the truth, it left me feeling absolutely magical.

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To look for truth, and to be honest, is terrifying. Forget big universal truths; I’m talking about little truths, personal truths. We are afraid to look inward, and to be honest with ourselves. And even if we are courageous enough to do that, then we are so concerned with the feelings of others, that we are afraid to share our truths with them. We punish ourselves with all sorts of guilt for causing someone emotional pain, when we really have no idea how they will feel if we’re honest. We jump through crazy ridiculous hoops, all because we want to avoid the turmoil of emotional pain (theirs and ours). Being honest and being kind are not mutually exclusive. You can and should deliver your truth without blame or judgment, but definitely with kindness. It just takes a little practice.

Sometimes we find ourselves in relationship dynamics with people who we perceive as emotionally fragile or explosive (it’s really the same thing). So we subjugate ourselves, and learn to maneuver around them. We do everything we can, twisting ourselves into knots, just to avoid those emotional mines. We never know when we’ll step on some trigger, so we make ourselves really really small. We tread lightly. We speak less and less. We express ourselves less and less. But unwittingly and inevitably the resentment grows more and more. In the end, we want nothing to do with this person anymore. How fun is that?

Instead, I propose that we try honesty. (It’s really scary, but it’s so so worth it). Let’s respect one another. Let’s trust each other to handle the truth. Let’s be really clear within ourselves, and with all the other people in our lives. Let’s unchain ourselves from guilt and obligation, so we can be completely free. Let’s forget about seeking approval, and instead live in our own integrity. Then, and only then, we can give endless love, kindness, and gratitude to everyone around us. Who’s with me?

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