The Truth shall set you free

Everyone knows we are meant to tell the truth.

The interesting question though is how much truth should we tell?

Should you tell your partner that their butt did look big in those new jeans?

If it helpful to point out every flaw in that new song your friend has written when he asks for your opinion?

I think a good question to ask is are you saying for them or for you?

All I know is that when honest conversations happen more often than not its awkward and painful but afterward you achieve new levels of intimacy.

Personally,I also love someone knowing everything about me, good and bad as that way they can make an informed decision.

If they still choose me after knowing everything whether business, client, family or friend I know I have been truly chosen and its a very satisfying feeling, if they don’t choose me it hurts but at least I didn’t hurt them by blagging my way into their lives.

I am reading an Interesting book called Radical Honesty, take a look on YouTube at Brad Blanton being interviewed.

Tell me your thoughts……

2 Comments

  1. My mum and I both like your comment challenging whether ‘the truth’ is for the person telling it or the person who is hearing it. We both, in most circumstances agree with ‘tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth’ yet there are undoubtedly differing degrees of truth. To be sensitively honest is very different to be brutally honest and being brutally honest, of course has different consequences.
    “Do these jeans make me look fat?”. “I think I’ve seen better on you…here try these, your butt will look delicious!” or “No your fat makes you look fat”. I think it’s pretty obvious that the latter is probably not the best approach. Though, with an issue such as retail, it is easy to tell the truth in a sensitive way without any sugar coating it; most women I know, friend or acquaintance or shop assistant would not just nod politely at a pair of jeans that make my arse look like two beach balls stuck to the top of my thighs. It may be slightly awkward, but most importantly it is done with kind intent. The same applies to music composition; if your friend wants to hear all your constructive criticism, it is kind to tell them the truth in the right way.
    So although it is not O.K. to lie, it is not O.K. to hurt people either. Brutal honesty is in most cases not out of love, it is done out of need. I remember once, my Dad got my Mum a writing desk for Christmas and it had her name on it. He was so excited about giving it to her but was very disappointed when she said “It’s very nice…but I probably wont use it” He was all upset and she was all sorry she’d upset him and it was all a big mess. In my humble opinion, she shouldn’t have said “I probably wont use it” but instead appreciated the gesture and liked it because he liked giving it to her. The brutal honesty was not needed because it wasn’t for him. I’m not saying she had to shed tears of joy all over the place, that would have been a lie…but perhaps a “I loved that you chose this for me” would have been perfect. She is a lovely lady by the way…this was a bit of an anomaly, she is actually sitting next to me chatting away and being all sweet as I write this.
    She just piped up with a little gem actually. “You don’t need to be brutally honest when it can’t change anything…like when she had just finished bricking the outline of her driveway (she loves a bit of the ol’ D.I.Y.) and then her Mum came out and said in reply to “What do you think?” “oh it’s lovely darling…but you could have concreted the bricks in a bit higher”. I’m sure you’ve guessed by the word concrete that they couldn’t have been shimmied up a few inches. She’d worked on them for a good three days and now apparently the stupid things were slightly too near the ground. Terrific. Again, the brutal honesty wasn’t needed, it wasn’t kind or loving, and it was awkward with nothing to show for it. If there is a purpose to honesty other than for the sake of being honest alone, then it is certainly called for, but if not, then it just doesn’t need to be said.
    One more thing I will say…if the truth condemns or destroys then I don’t think it should be said. ‘Radical Honesty’, from what I have heard I think suggests that we should keep nothing from the person we are trying to communicate with. I’m not sure though…a child performs his or her first guitar solo in the school band and isn’t that great because he or she is new to the instrument . “How did I do? “Great considering, but you sounded a bit flat and you were off time, I’m very proud of you though”. It just doesn’t feel right to say that. Or when a husband and wife are going through a rough patch in their marriage, to say “I don’t love you at the moment as much as I did when we first got married” It’s the truth and its brutal but surely it destroys a trust that they built together. Also, that particular truth is temporary, it will change as the emotions do, so perhaps what was true in the rough patch should not have been said.
    Wow…that’s a bit of a monologue.

  2. Sorry, couldn’t resist provoking you a bit more…I just read this bit again.

    “Personally, I also love someone knowing everything about me, good and bad as that way they can make an informed decision.

    If they still choose me after knowing everything whether business, client, family or friend I know I have been truly chosen and its a very satisfying feeling, if they don’t choose me it hurts but at least I didn’t hurt them by blagging my way into their lives.”

    Personally, I don’t feel the need to tell someone everything about me ( perhaps because a lot of it would probably be boring.) I feel secure that my friends and family will see who I am by how I treat them and those around me. I hope they would love the core of me and their love would not be swayed by the smaller aspects of my life, good or bad, that are more at the edges of who I am. We all have sinister thoughts sometimes and yes it’s good to be honest about them, but to feel uncomfortable if there is information that someone doesn’t know I think is unhealthy and maybe insecure. Some parts of my life or some thoughts are for me only…it doesn’t mean I couldn’t tell anyone if I wanted to, these parts or thoughts are not dirty little secrets (hopefully!, that would be bad, but they are personal to me and I like it that way. Perhaps I’m like the old lady that lives in the shoe and hates people and interaction and spits and young children, but but I really think it’s o.k. to keep things to yourself sometimes.

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