How Much Information Is Needed When Telling The Truth?

December 25, 2010 at 9:15 am | Posted in communication, self development/motivation | Leave a comment
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Being honest is something we learn while growing up but no one really teaches us how to do it, when it is suitable and when not and how much information we really need to share when doing it. Let’s have a look at it.

Telling the truth is a good thing

Growing up I remember my parents preaching that telling the truth is a good thing however going through life I have experienced many times that doing exactly that has brought me more pain and sorrow. Once I told a boyfriend that I got to know this new guy that I found interesting and that I would like to get to know him better. My boyfriend didn’t want to hear my truth and walked away. I was in shock! I totally did not expect that.

Tell the truth – now!

Are you telling the truth?

Parents want their children to explain what has really happened rather than making excuses. The question really is: What has happened before this situation that made the child believe it couldn’t say what was going on? Usually children experience punishment, shame or fear due to past experiences with parents, teachers or other people of care, which stops them from just telling things as they are.

Even the promise from parents to not punish the child if they only told the truth does not always hold up. Receiving double standard messages doesn’t make it easy…

Time and readiness

I believe that speaking the truth can only happen when 3 conditions are present:

  1. Is what you are going to say about yourself and can you be absolutely sure that it is true?
  2. Is the other person ready to hear what you have to say?
  3. Is it beneficial for yourself and the other person to know?

If you answered one of these questions with a no wait for some better time. This does not mean that you have an excuse to never fess up to something you have done. Be honest with yourself as you answer the questions – honesty with self is the first step.

How much detail?

Working with clients in distress has taught me that the amount of detail is another important question in telling the truth. Too much or too little information can be detrimental, depending on the case. If you say too little and leave the rest up to the other person’s imagination you might create more pain than if you speak it all. On the other hand if you go into too much detail of a sensitive issue, like for example an affair, you might also just add to the hurt as opposed to clear the air.

What WikiLeaks Is Teaching Us

December 10, 2010 at 12:38 pm | Posted in communication, inspiration/humour | Leave a comment
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What a great world we live in! We’ve got all these amazing opportunities, freedom of speech (in many places, it at least seems so), ability to study for everyone, including women etc. just to name a few. Social Media has taken over massive amount of social interactions, sharing of news and showcasing yourself to the world in ways it was never possible before. And yet, will all those great improvements, we have more people dealing with stress, addictions, depression or other mental illnesses. What happened?

I wonder if by speeding up the pulse of life we fail to nurture the real values in life?

With your profile on Facebook it’s no longer just the clothes you wear or the clubs you belong to but the amount of friends and the profile picture you show. Internet dating allows us to choose a profile picture of ourselves 10 years ago when we were slimmer, sexier and on holiday with a previous partner. Words like ‘busy’ and ‘appointment’ helps us to get around the fact that we are not keen to help our in-laws fix the roof without having to hurt their feelings. What is happening to us?

Publishing improves transparency

WikiLeaks seems to be a popular topic currently and I agree with their philosophy of “Publishing improves transparency, and this transparency creates a better society for all people.” In day-to-day life, publishing means speaking up, sharing, expressing, communicating – wow, that’s what interpersonal relationships are about! Make your emotions and thoughts publish, before you need to store them up and they use up your energy before you let them explode.

Speaking the unspeakable

Recently I worked with a client who spoke about him blowing up in a meeting, telling the people what was overdue for a long while, some of them silently nodding in agreement happy for someone else to speak the unspeakable and point out the elephant in the room. He realized that this issue had been playing on his mind and partly creating stress and disharmony in the rest of his life and relationship. Blurting out his truth, uncovering the lies and deceit was physically challenging and left him shaky and tired. The group of people who were meeting however couldn’t simply go back to how things were before and pretend to be blissfully unaware; they had to and did rise to a new level of teamwork.

Rise to the occasion

What have you not said that is playing on your mind? Which of your relationships might need an authenticity upgrade? What is the fear that keeps you from being totally honest with yourself and with others around you? I fully agree with Arjuna Ardagh on practicing radical honesty. Not sure if it’s all fun though however it definitely has the power to shift relationships.

Start today with yourself. Practice tomorrow with something small and simple. Notice the shift inside of you.

Remember: Take small steps.

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