Why Bother Telling The Truth?
There are two little words that reveal much about our character; “yes” and “no.”
If our yes means yes and our no means no, then others will know we mean what we say. But, if our “yes” is not an honest affirmation, then neither will our “no” be a legitimate “certainly not.” And if we cannot be candid with these two simple words, then how trustworthy are we?
Pleasing others is a costly way to live; it costs us our authenticity. To say, “yes,” only because we think that is what someone wants to hear us say, is to live unauthentic lives. Try saying, “yes” while shaking your head “no.” It is not an easy feat, only a confounding one. When we say “yes” when we really want to say, “no,” our emotions are baffled by the mixed message. We know what we want to say, but we back down from stating our truth. We may think we should say “yes” to avoid conflict, or someone’s dislike for us, but our dishonesty with ourselves and others only muddies the water in a relationship. If we say “yes,” but really mean “no,” feelings of unmet expectations and resentments begin to form between ourselves and the other person. We may begin to blame them for always wanting something from us; our time, energy, or advice. Because of our pride, we don’t want to let them down, but always rising to the occasion and meeting their needs only cements a sense of dishonesty between us. We meet their expectations only to be asked again and again and again. After a while, we may use avoidance behaviors. If I avoid them, they can’t ask me to do something and I don’t have to tell them, “no.” But, wouldn’t it be easier just to tell them “no?”
“No” is a very powerful word. Learning to say it saves us much time and energy at pretending. Saying “no,” informs others of my boundaries. When possible, I will give my time, energy or advice, but I am not always at someone’s disposal. I have my limits, I know them, and I can live comfortably within the parameters I set for myself. Saying “no,” without feeling like you have to attach a reason to it or a “sorry,” is a giant leap. Letting your “yes,” mean “yes,” and your “no,” mean “no,” is the easiest way for others to know what you mean. Standing in your truth can only make you stronger in your relationships.
Why bother telling the truth? It is worth the effort to stand in your truth. It can only make for clearer and better relationships.