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How to make true friends – Part 3 – The art of honesty

The art of honesty


It’s easy to say be honest and open with everyone but there is an art to being honest.

I remember when I was about 19, I was dancing with a girl in a nightclub, (that was back in the day when you just went up to a girl and tapped her on the shoulder and she was obliged to dance with you). I was talking away to her, just general chitchat. I then asked when her baby was due, as she was obviously pregnant. She looked at me and asked me to repeat what I had said, obviously the music was too loud, I then asked her ‘When is the baby due?’ looking toward her stomach. She glared at me and said ‘I’m not pregnant, I’m just ******* fat’ and she then stormed off. Now that was embarrassing. What did I learn from that? – Never ask a fat woman if she is pregnant! Yep, but I learned to keep my mouth shut until I was sure of the facts else a swift kick between the legs could be on its way. That wasn’t about honesty it was about diplomacy and tact and it ties in nicely with the art of honesty.

Honesty is telling the truth to people and telling the truth to yourself. This is a big distinction to make. Some people lie to themselves and can’t get to the truth, as they are lost in their own self-lies.

Why being honest is important


To gain respect from others and to have respect for yourself it is important to be honest and true to yourself and others. If you are honest from the outset you will gain a reputation for being an honest person, therefore you will gain the reputation for being trustworthy, therefore gaining the reputation of being dependable. Being honest can open so many doors for you.

Practising honesty with yourself


To practise honesty you have to start being honest with yourself.

Are you a lazy git – if so, admit it and do something about it,
Are you fat – Admit it, and do something about it if you’re not happy with it
Are you gorgeous – Admit it and make the most of it
Are you good at something – admit it and keep learning to become better
Do you really want that job – Look for another one and chuck the one you don’t like
Do you really want to be with your partner –

There are many questions to ask yourself and ask you must to ever have self-respect.

Practising honesty with others


Once you are comfortable telling yourself the truth it is time to tell others in a way that is neither offensive or hurtful.

Q. Do I look fat in this?
A. It’s not the kind of thing I would wear, now unless they have a very low IQ they will know what you mean here but without hurting and embarrassing them.

Q. Can you to take on another project? –
A. I would love to work on that, however I want more time with my family and I am already working on ……………This is being assertive which goes hand in hand with honesty once you have practised honesty for a while.

I am sure you can think of hundreds of scenarios where you have to tell the truth but feel a little uncomfortable doing it. If you shy away from telling the truth or standing up for yourself practise little by little. Once you’ve overcome the first honesty hurdle the rest become easier.

My wife always asks me my opinion on something she is wearing, or something she wants my opinion on, as she knows I will be completely honest without being hurtful and she respects that.

From now on…


If you want more respect for yourself and you want others to respect you it is important for honesty in your life.

There are two rules I would use when being honest:

When you are being honest with other people, be tactful not hurtful
When being honest with yourself, be blunt and take action.

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About Steven Aitchison

I am the creator of Change Your Thoughts (CYT) blog and love writing and speaking about personal development, it truly is my passion. There are over 500 articles on this site from myself and some great guest posters.
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