THE BLOG
08/25/2011 02:10 am ET | Updated Oct 24, 2011

Is Honesty Really the Best Policy?

Well it all depends on what you are trying to accomplish. If you are looking to forge meaningful friendships and relationships, then yes it is. If you prefer to dodge real connections and fear vulnerability, then no it isn't. Let me explain.

When you are honest it is very easy for you to spot dishonesty. On the contrary, when you are dishonest the lines become blurred and it's difficult to spot lies. Since I began writing and sharing some of my most painful and humiliating memories, many people have contacted me to thank me for expressing what they could not say. Don't you sometimes find that when you leave yourself open and vulnerable and say what is truly on your mind, those around you nod in agreement?

When we withhold our feelings and thoughts we put up a shield. Though this shield protects us from showing our vulnerabilities, it also keeps people out. Mainly people put up a shield because even though honesty and sharing often brings people together, it also has the ability to scare them away. This works in one's favor by weeding out the people who aren't genuine, yet even in those instances, most fear the pain of rejection so badly that they would not risk this in the first place.

This reminds me of a man who dumped me after I told him I was raped. At first I was shocked and hurt, but after a week I started to realize that it was actually a good thing -- a blessing in disguise. He was not on the same level as me. He wasn't looking for the same type of relationship I wanted, nor was he capable of providing me with the honesty and trust that I needed. He was working on a superficial level, and because of where his head was, he was unable to be honest with me about anything.

Many people run when others express vulnerabilities and feelings. It is difficult for some to relate to others on this level because they are not even relating to themselves on this level. How can you expect a person to be honest with you when they have been deceiving themselves for years? It is hard to hold a mirror up to yourself; to truly work on the things that need fixing and embrace the good, the bad and the ugly. A person who has been lying to themselves in no way can be honest, open or vulnerable to another -- there is just too much at stake.

So what happens when an honest person and a dishonest person become involved in a relationship or friendship? Well, it is designed to fail from the beginning. The honest person is attracted to the dishonest person based on what they know about them; however, what they know about them is just an intricate facade. Liars and dishonest people work overtime to maintain their elaborate illusions, but in the long term their smoke and mirrors are not very easy to maintain. Like a house of cards, it can all come crashing down due to the slightest gust of wind.

If you find yourself complaining about the inability to have meaningful friendships and relationships perhaps there is something about yourself that you need to look at. Have you been honest with yourself about who you are? Have you chosen to embrace yourself as is and work on the things that need improvement through self love and understanding? Or do you just put a band aid on it and go out the door every morning pretending that everything's fine? Maybe you even push your problems aside and like Scarlet O'Hara in 'Gone with the Wind," and tell yourself "I'll think about it tomorrow."

You can think about it tomorrow or the next day or the next year, but the longer you wait to face your demons the longer it will take for you to make actual progress and experience true spiritual growth and healing. The best time to start something is always right now, because you are either going to continue to crash and burn and have dissatisfying relationships for the rest of your life or you are going to put off today what you will eventually have to do tomorrow.

If you want to live a healthy life that involves spiritual growth, healthy living and meaningful relationships, then I am certain that honesty is indeed the best policy; being honest with yourself and with others is integral to our growth as a person. Like a plant stretching towards the sunlight, honesty nourishes our souls while dishonesty causes them to wither and shrivel away. A person will only get upset when confronted with the truth if they are lying to themselves to begin with. We all already know the truth, some just haven't yet acknowledged it.

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