living intuitively


Posts tagged honesty
Images by Brooke Richardson Photography

Images by Brooke Richardson Photography

Have you ever been talking with a group of people, and someone in the group starts spouting off a bunch of facts that aren'ttttt exactly true, and you feel compelled to set them straight? Or they start wildly embellishing a story, and you feel the urge to offer the, you know...TRUE version? Or maybe you're arguing with a friend, and they really messed up and dropped the friendship ball, and are getting defensive and combative when you call them out on it.

I don't know about you, but in situations like these, my hunger to be right is POWERFUL. They're wrong, and the world needs to know. 

I am practicing being kind instead of being right.

The more I learn about life, the more I realize how inferior being right is to being KIND. Kindness trumps all. However, it should be noted: Kindness doesn't necessarily mean nodding agreeably when someone is spewing inaccuracies that could be harmful/hurtful to others/lead them astray in a significant way. But if your friend is regaling others with her tale of being up front at the Beyonce concert (when in reality she was sharing binoculars with you in the nosebleeds), what's the big deal? Does it hurt anyone? Why embarrass her in front of others, just to set the record straight?

kind over right image 4.jpg
Not all truths need to be voiced

What's more important is to focus on what's causing that person to act the way they're acting, and say the things they're saying. Why do they feel the need to bolster their credibility/image/etc? Are they feeling undervalued and depressed? Are they bumming about a rejection, in their personal or professional life? Are they insecure about their worth? Or in the example of them being a less than ideal friend, what led them to make that mistake? 

Open-minded people don’t care to be right. They care to understand. There’s never a right or wrong answer. Everything is about understanding.
kind over right image 6.jpg

It can be really tough, but oh-so-more rewarding to check your ego and anger, and dig a little deeper. Dissolve your anger with kindness, compassion, and empathy. At least try to understand why they did what they did. If you do, it's actually a win win: It encourages a more peaceful and effective solution, which discourages repeat occurrences. If you can tease out the root of the problem, you can be the friend they need, and likely prevent it from re-manifesting (as suppressed, unresolved issues often do). 



kind over right image 5.jpg
H O N E S T . L O V E
Images by Brooke Richardson Photography

Images by Brooke Richardson Photography

Befriend the man who is brutally honest, for honesty is the highest form of respect.
— Daniel Saint

One of the things I value most in my friends is their willingness to tell me like it is. They're never abrasive and intentionally brutal - but they love me enough to call me out when needed, and to sidestep the sugarcoating. That right there is true friendship. True honest love. 

Think about a time when you were hesitant to be completely honest with a friend for fear of hurting their feelings, making them feel worse, etc. As friends, we often feel compelled to show support. Solidarity. Multiple exclamations of "I gotchu, girl! You tell 'em!" High five them for letting their boss have it, praise them for sticking it to their spouse, applaud them for blowing off an obligation to go out with friends instead. Rationalize their decision for ditching their goal to do xyz. That's what friends are for, right?! W R O N G O.

Now it's time to be honest with yourself. Ready? Okay, here we go. Ask yourself: Why am I reluctant to be honest with my friend? Is it because I feel unsupportive if I don't confirm and validate their action/opinion? Is it possibly because...I am trying avoid the discomfort of telling them like it is? 

honest love image 2.jpg
The vulnerability that honesty requires isn’t something that everybody can handle. Lying allows people to be comfortable.

Chances's the latter. Of course, a small part of it is us truly not wanting to rub salt in the wound/make our friends feel bad/worse. But if we're being honest with ourselves - we just personally don't want to experience the uneasiness of acknowledging the truth. Right?! It's easier for everyone to just pretend like, "YES - lighting into that biotch for daring to look at your man was totally the right thing to do." "You go girl for quitting your third job this year - they clearly don't appreciate what a gem you are." "That guy is DEFINITELY into you. He's obvi scared by how much he likes you, so he's not texting." "Yes, you should absolutely buy those $200 jeans even though money's been tight - they look phenomenal on you!"

Being honest doesn’t get you a lot of friends but it’ll always get you the right ones.
— John Lennon

But if you're truly a good friend - you'll prioritize your friend's overall well-being over your present comfort. You'll sacrifice your comfort for their welfare. Ask yourself: What will serve them best long-term? Leveling with them and gently acknowledging their hurtful behavior (hurtful to you, to them, to others)? Kindly helping them face facts and address their issues? Guess what?! Doing so will help them significantly more in the long run, by helping them grow and evolve and escape their limiting thoughts/actions.

Once you've spoken your truth, offer support and love. Provide encouragement. It's not enough to just identify the issue - actually help them through it! If roles were reversed, wouldn't you rather have someone give it to you straight, instead of simply placating you? It might sting initially, but trust me - confronting the issue head on now stings a helluva lot less than if you were to avoid it and have it grow and sucker punch you later. 

honest love image 3.jpg
Be honest, brutally honest. That’s what’s going to maintain relationships.
— Lauryn Hill

Furthermore, when you're honest with someone, your praise and compliments will carry considerably more weight. They'll recognize your authenticity and know you mean what you say. 

Honesty has a beautiful and refreshing simplicity about it. No ulterior motives. No hidden meanings. An absence of hypocrisy, duplicity, political games, and verbal superficiality. As honesty and real integrity characterize our lives, there will be no need to manipulate others.
— Charles Swindoll

The truth is... I love you all.

honest love image 4.jpg