How (and how not) to react when someone’s being honest

How (and how not) to react when someone’s being honest

Photo Credit – We Heart It

Honesty is the best policy, right?

But it’s not always easy to do – especially when you’re afraid of how the other person’s going to react. I’m sure we can all relate to that. You’ve either been the scared one, the scary one – or both.

Reactions to people’s “coming clean” are so important.

The way you respond can make a difference of night and day in how your relationship – whether it be a friend, lover, child, parent, employee – proceeds from here, or not. The safer the environment you can create for the person telling the truth, the safer they’ll feel to tell it now and in the future. How you react will set the foundation for how forthcoming this person will be. And isn’t trust and honesty what we all claim to want in our relationships?

Sure, some reactions can be hard to avoid, especially when it’s shocking news. But often, most news can be dealt with more rationally by taking a deep breath and a minute, to absorb what’s coming your way. And the better you get at that everyday, the more equipped you’ll be for the bigger stuff that comes along.

I’m not saying you have to be immediately forgiving or understanding, but reactions like yelling, judging and/or basically “losing it” can stifle the flow of honestly in the relationship. The person becomes fearful of telling the truth, or at least, intensely hesitant. So, they hold onto pieces of information; and when you find out, you feel mad, hurt and betrayed… but you have to recognize your part in this.

The ability to remain calm in the face of any storm (and let’s be real, most of the situations we face are more like high wind speeds), is an indication of maturity and centeredness; and it’s a trait that’ll help you create more open and honest relationships.

If the truth is important to you, then it’s not only a matter of being able to dish it out; it’s just as much about your ability to take it in…In other words, don’t be so scary.

As hard as it may seem at times, be calm in the face of the truth, that is, if it’s something you want to encounter more often.

Peace, love and truth be told,


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