The Power of Honesty

Oct 24, 2011
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Honesty is the best policy? But is it always that simple?

I have found that, as human beings, we have struggled enough and managed to make honesty entirely something else.To me, honesty comes in three different packages, none of which seem to ever be the most appropriate of options for every situation. And now, in no apparent order, my own levels of honesty:

1) First of all, there is pure honesty. Not very many people can function solely off of this rule, simply because it typically isn’t found to be the most useful and it is also the most painful of options. Pure honesty involves telling those around you your true thoughts and emotions as they come. I tend to use this form of honesty most often, and I will tell you from experience, that it is really difficult and rarely well-received. I think it comes from having a near-fatal car accident as a teen and realizing how finite and short life really is. I tend to react based off of fear of never having the chance to tell someone how I feel or what is going on in my brain; so I blurt it out. The world is typically not very comfortable with pure honesty, so be careful with it.

2) The second sort of honesty is probably the most widely utilized and most varied. This kind of honesty is the kind that is hand-picked from half-truths and concealed insults. The majority of its users are simply trying to save the feelings and repercussions of the one in privy to this “honesty”. We are all guilty of this method of honesty, but it seems to become more and more prevalent as I get older. I can’t quite accuse a “sign of the times” or adulthood, but whatever the case, I find this option most appealing for most. And maybe that’s not so bad. Maybe this sort of honesty is the best and kinder option when confronting wardrobe malfunctions, mediocre performances, and rotten home-cooking.

3) As for the third type of honesty, this is really the option for those who have lost themselves in their own lack of honesty. Thankfully far less frequent, this type of honesty is the sort in which the user has found him or herself in the #2 option so many times that there is a blur on what is really real and what has been fabricated honesty. Here, dishonesties become realities. This type of honesty can also be the most dangerous to the user and its receivers. When honesty becomes such a stretch and the actual truth is so far away that dozens of stories have been placed strategically on top, most things start to fall apart. One small career embellishment has now become an entire life of lies and now there is no sign of the truth, nor an indication of how much one has lied and in what stories to become the fabricated person that they have spiraled downward to be.

All in all, honesty comes in different forms for different situations. And, quite often, there is much compassion found in the stories of looking great in that dress or really enjoying those meatballs. However, where did it all start? When did our truths start to manifest themselves in other ways than simply that: the truth?

Author: Ryan McLean