The Truth about Honesty


I recently read a beautiful yet rarely admitted truth about honesty. Nicole Kear, author of the memoir Now I See You said this in Psychology Today:

“It’s terribly inconvenient, but honesty isn’t something you can pay off in one lump sum or cover with one grand gesture. It’s a daily grind: hard, tedious, unglamorous. It does, however, get easier with practice, and it brings relief. It’s a kind of lightness so great, it takes a while to experience it fully. It’s like putting down a heavy box you’ve been hauling up flight upon flight of stairs. For a while after you’re free of the burden, your muscles are still tense from the exertion, and once you can relax, you look back and wonder how you ever hauled it in the first place.”

 Kear was referring to sharing the truth of her blindness, but the relief (and the not-so-sexy hard work) of day-to-day honesty doesn’t just apply to “big” secrets. It is also a powerfully apt description of the courage it takes to be oneself on a regular basis.

To be really honest, we have to keep admitting who we are, over and over again. Sometimes it is a small admission - to disagree with your boss, to admit to your partner you are scared, or even to simply show up.

What’s in your own box of secrets? What are the things you keep hidden: emotions, character quirks, past mistakes, weaknesses, even strengths? 

Imagine for a second what it might feel like to start to unpack that box. Maybe it's time to start lightening the load just a little.  One moment of truth at a time.

(photo credit: Craig Sunter

Camille DePutter