Honesty is both the bedrock and the lava of all relationships. Honesty either burns you or keeps your relationship rock solid. You need to know when to lie.
A Throw Back Post – Originally published with a different title two years ago, relevant today. Edited a bit.
Emotional Fitness Training Thoughts
Leadership gurus starting with parents, teachers, preachers, bosses, coaches, and ending with politicians caught up in the happiness craze believe when the truth might hurt, lies are better. Not my idea of how to build trust and lay the foundation for a good relationship.
My father was born to praise. His Golden Rule: “If you can’t say anything nice, shut your mouth.” Not as great as you think. Why?
I never was sure where I stood. I knew in my heart, I was not always praiseworthy. Confession: one of the reasons I fell for the man I married and stayed married to as he tells it like it is. No doubt at all where you stand. Painfully at times and often I would like him to shut his mouth. But, I rely on the fact that he says what he means and means what he says and that is a better foundation than not knowing what someone who has your heart in their possession really thinks.
Reality check: Honesty is not always the best policy and lies come in many sizes and shapes. Some lies promote caring relationships; others destroy the most caring relationship.
“Be kind lies” are those little white lies that skirt the truth but make someone feel better without doing harm.
Lies of omission can be good or bad. Good when the information will do no good; bad when the attempt is to deceive.
“Selling something” lies can be either good or bad. Helping sell someone on their worth is good. Hiding or lying or distorting benefits or dangers to sell a product is bad.
Then there are “necessary lies” that keep people safe. Your child is kidnapped. Your are arranging to deliver the ransom with the kidnapper; you tell him the police are not involved when one is sitting next to you. Another necessary lie: your country is at war, you withhold information necessary to safe guard troops.
Good lies do no harm, bad lies harm. That is simplistic, but remains the core of knowing when and how to lie.
Emotional Fitness Training Tips
Here are six tips to help you be an effective liar.
Tip one: Tell as few lies as possible. As the bedrock of long-term relationships, honesty matters.
Tip two: Be aware of when you are lying and why.
Tip three: If you are lying to cover up some wrong you did, stop misbehaving. Confessing might be helpful, might not. If you confess make that matter by apologizing correctly. Here is reminder of how to apologize properly.
Tip four: Learn the art of saying what you mean, meaning what you say, but not saying it mean. How? Keep your tone of voice gentle, your face loving, your words kind, and end with a positive.
This is not easy for many of us, but it helps to have strong self-soothing skills. For more ways to soothe, buy EFT’s eBooks Self-Soothing to Add Calm to Your Life. It costs $2.99 and costs less and soothes more that a latte.
Tip five: When you find another has lied to you, practice forgiveness, but trust less, at least for a while.
When I was a foster parent, I extended trust and believed what I was told until a had proof a child was lying. Then I would pick when to believe that child. I made it a point to not believe one who had lied to me when I knew s/he was telling the truth. Enraging, but a lift of my eyebrows and a quiet reminder of the lie drove an important life lesson home.
Tip six: Lying can become an easy out and a bad habit. Keep track of when and why you lie, for every lie makes it easier and easier to tell the next one. The “Be Kind” Lies can get you into lying more and more often.
Thank you for all you do
Remember to share all you find of value on the internet. All who post crave recognition. A like says “Thank You.” Comments say you have read and thought about the post. Sharing is a gift to three people: the blogger, the people you share with, and you for your kindness blesses you.
Post Inspiration: This post was inspired by a WordPress Daily Prompt: Smoke
Links of Interest
These links are for those not familiar with Emotional Intelligence or the idea of Emotional Fitness.
- Emotional Intelligence (en.wikipedia.org)
- The five components of emotional Intelligence (www.sonoma.edu)
- About Emotional Fitness Training (emotionalfitnesstraining.com)
- An Emotional Fitness Program for Parents (amazon.com)
Even the most learned researchers and therapists quarrel about much. Take their advice and mine carefully. Don’t just listen to your heart, but also think; don’t just think, listen to your heart. Heart and head working together increase the odds you will find useful advice amid all the promises and hopes pushed at you be others. As others have noted, take what seems useful, leave the rest.
Disclaimer two: Forgive my grammatical errors
If you need perfect posts, you will not find them here; I will understand if you don’t follow, like or share what like me. Not only am I dealing with an aging brain, but all of my life I have been plagued by dysgraphia–a learning disability, Some of my posts might be peppered with bad spelling, poor punctuation, and worse words that make no sense. If you want to hang in with me, thank you; you are kind. If a post doesn’t make sense or bugs you too much, stop reading, I will understand.
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