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More About Honesty

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hon·es·ty
 
  1. The quality or condition of being honest; integrity.

  2. Truthfulness; sincerity: in all honesty.

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Both Susan and Peter said they wanted the people they were in relationship with to be more honest. If only they knew what was going on they could deal with it and move on. Meanwhile a lot of hurt was happening and escalating on both sides.

Debbie was unhappy in her marriage and saw no way out of this. So one day she left. That same day her husband Steven of 21years came home to a half empty house and a note. When Steven came to see me he was in shock. He repeated statements like:

  • “She never told me anything was wrong...” 
  • “I never knew...”

These sorts of statements are common with people who have felt that the other person was not being honest with them. When we explored what may have been happening in each of these relationships BEFORE the presenting problem occurred it was often found that information was being withheld on both sides, not just with one person. This does not condone the bad behavior of another.

It just means that if we take a look at what we might be contributing we could find half the answer to the problem. It’s the little pebbles of unspoken problems in the shoe that over years if they are not pulled out can cripple a relationship. When we talk about honesty in relationships we are not talking about the boulders!

We are not talking about the big lies! By the time a relationship has got to this point I have found there has been a lot of denial, avoidance and a sense of helplessness by one or both.

IF we can attend to the pebbles the boulders won’t appear.

Often it is helpful to start with what not to do before we can understand what we can do to help fix a relationship problem. Lets go back to Susan and what was happening in the lead up to David’s increasing absence, physically in coming home and eventually emotionally by being vague with his answers.

As Susan began to learn ways to get to know herself she discovered that she was a very passive part of the relationship. Basically she played the role of ‘pleaser’ in her relationships when she was growing up. She hated conflict and would rather bury her own needs to keep someone else happy. In Susan’s case this was not saintly, in fact it was destructive to every relationship she had because she found herself NOT BEING REAL in the relationships.

Initially for the other person in relationship with Susan they could enjoy this power and attention but eventually they got bored, frustrated and lacked motivation. This is because it meant not only that they had to come up with all the ideas and initiate everything in the relationship, but that they missed out on the growth and the stimulation that comes with two fully present individuals contributing to a relationship.

Does this mean that Susan was the one being dishonest and not David? Well yes and no. Susan actually was being dishonest with herself first and then with David by withholding a huge part of herself. She was not being honest with her own needs and wants. David also was being dishonest by allowing this to go on for so long without addressing his frustration in the relationship.

Instead he found substitute short term ways to fulfill that stimulation. No he was not having an affair. He loved Susan very much and thankfully Susan was honest with herself sooner than later before the rot had set in too much. David had started finding outlets like the gym and going out for drinks with a group of friends. Why didn’t he include Susan? Susan’s ‘pleaser’ personally was not something he wanted to share with people he was just getting to know and he felt more free being on his own and not worrying about her which he had had done since he met her.

Peter learned ‘Holistic Living’ techniques to get support and clarity. He got it. He soon discovered that though he was a kind dad and loved his daughter very much he had also been very controlling of Jess. He realized how much Jess had followed his suggestions for her career and many of her decisions. Thankfully Jess was now appearing to rebel against this control.

At first to Peter it seemed that she had the problem not him. Then he put on ‘the wide angled lens’. This bigger picture motivated Peter to take a bit of personal development time for himself to bring resolution around his own childhood that was fueling this need to be controlling When Peter was growing up his mother had left the family.

His sister had died when he was 10 years old. He got to trust his step mother Mary, that his dad married when peter was 12 years of age. Then their marriage ended and as much as he wanted to she did not seem to want much contact with him or his siblings. Peter developed an unconscious belief that the females in his life that he got close to would eventually leave him. He had begun to fulfill this belief yet again by nearly driving away even his own daughter in his desperate need to control her and keep her close.

We might say Jess could of done something about this as well. In her future relationships hopefully she does. Just for now though Jess is very young and still the apprentice in relationship communication and needed Peter to lead by example.

Debbie had approached Steven on a number of occasions saying she was not happy and requesting they get help. Well he never said no to this but he also never said yes. Life was busy especially with work and bills to pay and he just never got around to it. 21 years had passed and Debbie had enough.

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Honest Relationships”

© Alannah Dore; adorholisticliving.com

"Pretty much all the honest truth telling there is in the world is done by children."

Oliver Wendell Homes- Physician poet and ahead of his time for the 1800’s on medical matters and philosophical perceptions of life.

Most clients I find, who are seeking help want to improve or fix their relationships. Not just romantic relationships either. They want to get on better with all the people in their life. Relationships are a major source of happiness and misery. The most frequent reason for relationship problems is dishonesty. The most frequent reason for solutions is honesty.

Susan knew she had problems with her partner Paul when he started coming home every night late. It never used to be like this. They loved spending time preparing the evening meal together after they both got home from work and chatting about their day. She asked him directly “Why have you changed?” and he said work was putting more pressure on him. She accepted this for a few weeks but as time went on and the number of nights on her own grew she started to doubt what he was saying. She quizzed him many times and his responses became more vague.

Another problem for Susan was while she was focusing on what was not happening in the relationship she was not getting on with adjusting her own life independently. She found herself becoming someone she didn’t like. Feeling insecure around her partner even when he was there, obsessing over the time in the evenings and watching the clock for when he walked in the door.

All the other things they used to enjoy were no longer fun because this unresolved dark feeling hung between them in the background. It was a vicious cycle. The more Susan obsessed the more David withdrew the more Susan obsessed. Peter had been divorced for 10 years and had resettled into a happy new relationship. He had made it a point to invest his time and energy over the years into his daughter Jess who was now 20 years old.

She had even come to live with him for a few years when she was 14 years old until she went over seas at 19 years with Peter’s encouragement. Now she was back and Peter was excited to have her living nearby again. The trouble was she seemed to have  changed. Whenever she was around him she was critical and rude towards him. He asked her what was wrong and the answer was “nothing”.

div6b.jpg

Both Susan and Peter said they wanted the people they were in relationship with to be more honest. If only they knew what was going on they could deal with it and move on. Meanwhile a lot of hurt was happening and escalating on both sides.

Debbie was unhappy in her marriage and saw no way out of this. So one day she left. That same day her husband Steven of 21years came home to a half empty house and a note. When Steven came to see me he was in shock. He repeated statements like:

  • “She never told me anything was wrong...” 
  • “I never knew...”

These sorts of statements are common with people who have felt that the other person was not being honest with them. When we explored what may have been happening in each of these relationships BEFORE the presenting problem occurred it was often found that information was being withheld on both sides, not just with one person. This does not condone the bad behavior of another.

It just means that if we take a look at what we might be contributing we could find half the answer to the problem. It’s the little pebbles of unspoken problems in the shoe that over years if they are not pulled out can cripple a relationship. When we talk about honesty in relationships we are not talking about the boulders!

We are not talking about the big lies! By the time a relationship has got to this point I have found there has been a lot of denial, avoidance and a sense of helplessness by one or both.

IF we can attend to the pebbles the boulders won’t appear.

Often it is helpful to start with what not to do before we can understand what we can do to help fix a relationship problem. Lets go back to Susan and what was happening in the lead up to David’s increasing absence, physically in coming home and eventually emotionally by being vague with his answers.

As Susan began to learn ways to get to know herself she discovered that she was a very passive part of the relationship. Basically she played the role of ‘pleaser’ in her relationships when she was growing up. She hated conflict and would rather bury her own needs to keep someone else happy. In Susan’s case this was not saintly, in fact it was destructive to every relationship she had because she found herself NOT BEING REAL in the relationships.

Initially for the other person in relationship with Susan they could enjoy this power and attention but eventually they got bored, frustrated and lacked motivation. This is because it meant not only that they had to come up with all the ideas and initiate everything in the relationship, but that they missed out on the growth and the stimulation that comes with two fully present individuals contributing to a relationship.

div6b.jpg

Does this mean that Susan was the one being dishonest and not David? Well yes and no. Susan actually was being dishonest with herself first and then with David by withholding a huge part of herself. She was not being honest with her own needs and wants. David also was being dishonest by allowing this to go on for so long without addressing his frustration in the relationship.

Instead he found substitute short term ways to fulfill that stimulation. No he was not having an affair. He loved Susan very much and thankfully Susan was honest with herself sooner than later before the rot had set in too much. David had started finding outlets like the gym and going out for drinks with a group of friends. Why didn’t he include Susan? Susan’s ‘pleaser’ personally was not something he wanted to share with people he was just getting to know and he felt more free being on his own and not worrying about her which he had had done since he met her.

Peter learned ‘Holistic Living’ techniques to get support and clarity. He got it. He soon discovered that though he was a kind dad and loved his daughter very much he had also been very controlling of Jess. He realized how much Jess had followed his suggestions for her career and many of her decisions. Thankfully Jess was now appearing to rebel against this control.

At first to Peter it seemed that she had the problem not him. Then he put on ‘the wide angled lens’. This bigger picture motivated Peter to take a bit of personal development time for himself to bring resolution around his own childhood that was fueling this need to be controlling When Peter was growing up his mother had left the family.

His sister had died when he was 10 years old. He got to trust his step mother Mary, that his dad married when peter was 12 years of age. Then their marriage ended and as much as he wanted to she did not seem to want much contact with him or his siblings. Peter developed an unconscious belief that the females in his life that he got close to would eventually leave him. He had begun to fulfill this belief yet again by nearly driving away even his own daughter in his desperate need to control her and keep her close.

We might say Jess could of done something about this as well. In her future relationships hopefully she does. Just for now though Jess is very young and still the apprentice in relationship communication and needed Peter to lead by example.

Debbie had approached Steven on a number of occasions saying she was not happy and requesting they get help. Well he never said no to this but he also never said yes. Life was busy especially with work and bills to pay and he just never got around to it. 21 years had passed and Debbie had enough.

div6b.jpg

What did each of these people do wrong?

First before we look at this we need to remind ourselves that these people like you and I, are human. We are not perfect and we don’t have the training in many situations to know what to do. Our culture does a bad job generally in teaching us how to be honest. So we all need to be forgiven for our mistakes while encouraged to take responsibility for learning new ways to be in a relationship.

Susan needed to get to know herself and be more honest with  herself and do something about it. David needed to be more honest with Susan and tell her what was bothering him Peter had noticed that Jess was very compliant and it had bothered him from time to time but he never let that bothered feeling be investigated.

Instead he let it go until her behavior started causing him real pain. Debbie had given Steven an earlier indication that things were a problem but once she also did some work on herself she admitted that she really was scared to tell him how severe things really were. In the past when she had been more honest Steven had attacked her verbally and even threatened her that he would leave her if she brought up those issues again. Debbie needed to take this further sooner.

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Steven began to explore his own needs more and acknowledged that his threats to Debbie had been true. He had ignored the signals his own behavior was telling him and buried himself in his work instead. He learned to support himself emotionally and healed his own issues from the past that had fueled his bad behavior. He also acknowledged that he had completely ignored other signals in his relationships; not just Debbie’s pleading but the other signs like his own workaholic patterns. We can learn a lot from Susan, David, Peter, Jess, Debbie and Steven.

1. Clarify your unconscious beliefs that you are bringing into your relationships. To discover these is to discover gold. By creating shifts in your beliefs you RECREATE your relationships!

2. When your intuition or intellect are suggesting that some thing is wrong then LISTEN and ACT. Don’t ignore the pebbles or they might turn into unmanageable boulders.

3. Take RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR PART in what is happening. It might take one to tell a lie but it takes two to keep a lie going.

4. TELL them the truth about how much you care and value them more often than the things that bother you. Tell them through words and actions.

5. Tell the truth to people who have a right to know! Yes it’s good to tell the truth but as long as withholding the truth is not hurting another and as long as telling the truth may mean that you are going to be badly treated in someway then ONLY ‘tell the truth to people who have earned the right to hear it ”

So much of what occurs in relationships when it comes to dishonesty comes from past beliefs, fears and emotionally insecurities Because of this many people have unrealistic expectations that the other person KNOWS exactly what they are doing and why they are doing it. I do believe most people know what they are doing and are not being honest with themselves when they ignore signals.

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I don’t believe that people know WHY they are really doing, reacting, feeling thinking a certain way in a relationship. There will be surface reasons sure, and too often individuals in relationships get caught up in these and don’t dive deep into the underlying reasons. Most people do not take time to get to know their emotional self. Getting to know your inner self and learning to support that part of you does not mean ‘paralysis by analysis’.

It’s more about learning to listen to the gut feelings we carry around in us and also learning what we can do to heal or self soothe those feelings and promote more positive in our life. This in turn will promote more responsibility and fewer defenses. Defensiveness only stirs up more dishonesty that eventually turns into fully blown ‘porky pie’ lies!

One amazingly supportive way to attend to emotional honesty in your relationships is to get to know the emotional needs, wants and fears in your ‘Inner Child’.

The ‘Inner Child’ is the emotional part of us. When we are in conflict with someone else and dumping on each other or when we are having a cold war of silence imagine not two adults but two children in big bodies interacting with the same tactics that match the developmental stages children go through. “No its mine!”, “I had it first!” Or “It’s not fair…” (said with a whine!) are common reactions to relationship hurt and pain.

Ironically the child in you is the most honest part of you. Love and learn about this part of you. May you have great amazing honest relationships always.

Finally one of the most wonderful recommendations for relationships is to be found in a saying adopted by the 12 step programs, (personal development support groups for addictions including relationship addictions)

“May I be granted with the serenity to accept the things that I cannot change, change the things I can and have the wisdom to know the difference.”

anonymous

You cannot make someone else honest but the more honest you are with yourself the more you are going to bring honesty out in another!

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Is Honesty The Best Policy?

Nearly everyone agrees, Honesty is the best policy. Yet, when push comes to shove, many people tell a little white lie to avoid hurting someone's feelings, or facing oneself. This article discusses the rationale of little white lies, and if or when a white lie is acceptable.

No matter how insignificant you might think a 'little white lie' (dishonesty) has on the relationship, the energy of a 'little white lie' looms between you and the other person. You might argue that 'little white lies' (untruths) are harmless.

However, they are like small cracks that weaken the overall structure in the long term. Even giving someone a false compliment or ostensibly protecting someone can create problems later when the alternate reality you created becomes the basis for further interactions.

Even though all future actions may be honest, the underlying unstable foundation of a 'little white lie,' (dishonesty) will threaten to derail an otherwise good relationship. This then leads to further energy being spent on keeping things hidden, working to remember the 'little white lies' you have told and fearing the consequences of being found out. Your relationships then becomes a tiring and draining experience.

Speaking and living your truth, involves risking, and among other things, the possibility of rejection. However, when you allow yourself to follow the honest flow of life, you are supported by the universal law of cause and effect. You can then use your energy to cultivate physical, emotional and spiritual well-being and to create your dreams, rather than leaving yourself vulnerable to being drained and overwhelmed with keeping the web of dishonest puzzle pieces coherent.

When you speak the truth, you affirm what already is. Speaking your truth is analogous to using a paddle when the stream is already moving the same direction. You are already supported by the universe and its energy flow, so you do not need to exert extraordinary energy, thus leaving more energy for other pursuits.

Energetically, dishonesty redirects your energy against the flow, which requires extra effort. In addition, dishonesty creates an alternate reality that requires further energetic attention to be maintained.

Thus, you can readily see that you are best served when you work with the flow of the universe.

You can make the choice to be free of the burden of dishonesty at any time. Today is the first day of the rest of your life-- Begin today to choose honesty in every interaction. Bringing the nurturing power of the universe's energy into your life brings lasting positive results.

Dorothy M. Neddermeyer, PhD, Life Coach, Hypnotherapist, Author, "101 Great Ways To Improve Your Life." Dr. Dorothy has the unique gift of connecting people with a broad range of profound principles that resonate in the deepest part of their being. She brings awareness to concepts not typically obvious to one's daily thoughts and feelings. http://www.drdorothy.net

Article Source:  click here

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