At times I wonder if the person who said “Honesty is the best policy” knew what they were talking about. Some of the most embarrassing moments of my life happened when I was honest.
For years, one of my best friends reminded me incessantly about the time his mother offered me some chocolate cake. Being unfamiliar with her cooking at that time, I dared asking “Is it good?”
My friend often reminded me of my daring to ask such a question. For me, it was about being honest, for him, it was sacrilege questioning his mom’s cooking.
There was another time when I worked for a drug rehab hospital. While attending a planning meeting, the decision makers were wondering what speaker to invite to an upcoming grand opening. The list of speakers contained many trendy and popular speakers of that time.
At hearing the mention of one name, I found myself in disbelief. I was familiar with her from her advocating using hallucinogens as a way of awakening consciousness.
I couldn’t believe my ears. Being puzzled by this suggested candidate, I spoke up and shared my concern about her advocating illegal drugs with the group.
I expressed my reservations about having an advocate of LSD promoting the opening of a drug rehab. In my mind, it was a contradictory message.
The room suddenly grew silent. They didn’t invite her to speak, nor was I invited to any more planning meetings. In my mind, I had visions of being fired for what happened, yet that never occurred.
There have been other times when it cost me something to be honest. Some of the scariest moments in my life occurred when I faced a moment of honesty.
I also learned that the attitude behind my honesty was important as well. Being honest with hostile intent never turned out well.
When it comes to your marriage, honesty is important. It is also scary at times, both in terms of having the right attitude and facing down your fear of rejection in case your spouse doesn’t like what you say.
It’s also nerve racking knowing when to speak out and when to be silent. You can be honest without volunteering information that not being asked for.
At this point, it’s fair to say honesty may be ‘for the best’, yet it’s not always easy or pleasant. No one ever said honesty is the most pleasant policy.
Honesty also requires the right timing. Catching your spouse off guard and expecting them to be brutally honest is a volatile combination. Honesty is powerful. Since it is so powerful, you have to be careful in how you use it.
Honesty is just one component of my Trust Formula which I cover in the video, “How Can I Trust You Again?”. If your marriage is missing honesty or has the wrong idea of honesty, you could be making things harder than they need to be.
Honesty is a great tool, yet like all tools, it can be mishandled. When handled correctly honesty brings a connectedness that adds power to your relationship.
Nothing in this Work is intended to replace common sense, legal, medical or other professional advice. If your situation warrants it, please seek competent professional counsel.