Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Truth - A Necessity For Real Growth

If you want to become more than you currently are today, then you MUST first face the brutal truth of your current reality - the truth about who and where you are right now. But facing the truth is both difficult and in many ways impossible without the assistance of others with an objective view.

So let me ask you two questions:

1. Do you have someone who you trust enough and that loves you enough to actually tell you the truth - whether its good news or bad?
2. Who do you love enough to be completely honest with - even if that communication hurts?

If you are like most that I ask those questions to, it would be one of the hardest conversations you've ever had. Why is that?

It was these questions that stirred up a great conversation with two Tweeps, Gloria Bell (@GloriaBell) and Ron Hudson (@Ron_Hudson) on Twitter the other day on this exact topic. And it was this conversation that has inspired me to write this blog.

You see, I believe that honesty and trust are the foundation of true love. Not part time, fair weather honesty and trust, but every day complete and unconditional honesty and trust. These two concepts, when built into a relationship, promote open and meaningful communication between two people. They are the building blocks of what every successful relationship is about.

Unfortunately though, most people are afraid to be honest with those they love. Why is that?

In our Twitter conversation the other evening, Ron, Gloria and I basically concluded the answer is sadly based in our own insecurities - not in "our love" and compassion for the other person. We agreed that as members of the human race, we tend to be afraid that we will not be able to communicate what we feel without hurting our loved one's feelings. And we fear we could potentially lose our dear friend with such open, honest language as they reject both us and our ideas.

Unfortunately, when we let this fear govern our actions we are being more selfish than protective of our friend's feelings. We tend to be focused more on protecting our own interests than welfare of the one we love. Because, as cold and harsh as it sounds, many of us would rather let someone we love not live up to their potential than risk losing them. And this tends to be true, whether they would like to admit it or not.

Now we all know the adage:

If you love something, set it free. If it come back it is yours. If it doesn't it never was.

The same idea applies here. If you love someone, then you should help them become the best person they can be. Be honest with them - from the spirit of helping them grow. If your heart is truly based in love as you share any truth with them, they will feel it. But beware, if your intention is otherwise, and you are only trying to tear them down and protect your own self interests, they will feel that as well.

Either way, when you are open and honest with someone you love, you must accept that how they respond is their choice - not yours. If your honesty helps them grow beyond your relationship with them, accept that fact - knowing that you helped them to become something bigger and better. It doesn't mean that they don't "love" you. It simply means that they are moving on to something else.

Such is often the struggle of a parent.

So, the key to remember is that when you do something for someone you love, it's not about you - it is about them. Because, as I have only recently truly come to understand, love is doing for others what makes them feel loved and gives them the strength to be the best person they can be.

As difficult as that can be sometimes.

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