The Nature of Tough Love and Honesty
In the modern world today, it seems that there is an ever-growing metaphorical box of “the things you don’t talk about”. I’m here to say, that those “things you don’t talk about” should be the very things that you really need to talk about. If we sideline problems which need to be discussed, those “things you don’t talk about” grow into bigger problems over time. If you have issues within your relationship and you say nothing, then the fault is on you for not bringing it up. If you don’t like the way someone makes your coffee and you don’t tell them, they’re not going to know and you’re not going to enjoy your coffee.
If your partner asks you if they look fat in those pants and you lie and say they don’t, soon they won’t fit into them anymore and they’ll need to buy some more pants. However, if you recommended going for a run and doing some exercise then they know and can take appropriate action. You are assisting them to be the person that they want to be. They want to look good and want others to think they look good, so you’re assisting them by being honest. Sure, their feelings may be hurt initially but in the long run, they will be able to improve, and those pants are going to fit much better.
Relationships need to be built on honesty, trust and respect and sometimes that means being brutally honest. I will elaborate why with these 6 reasons:
1.If you don’t tell them, they won’t know.
If you don’t know that you are not at your best but everyone tells you otherwise, then how are you supposed to improve? Saying nothing, helps no one.
I always welcome constructive criticism. When people tell me that I can improve in certain areas in life, I appreciate it but only if they offer suggestions or alternatives to what I’m already doing. Criticism on it’s own can be destructive but there are ways to communicate potential improvements in a polite and positive way by giving alternatives, suggestions and recommendations.
2.Honest feedback allows you to develop and grow.
This isn’t really about fitting into your jeans but it is a relatable example for all of us. It’s about helping the people around you to develop and grow to where they themselves aspire to be. If we all told each other that we are smart enough and don’t need to learn anymore then we would all be as dumb as doorknobs.
If you happen to trip over and start bleeding everywhere but your friend says that it looks fine, because it’s not fashionable to bleed and they don’t want you to get embarrassed, then you will be at risk of infection and potential death. I’m sure you would be grateful for an honest opinion and maybe some medical attention. Giving honest feedback saves us from ourselves.
3.You can’t know you’re failing if there aren’t standards to compare to.
If there are no standards to which you hold yourself to then you cannot succeed or reach your goal. if you think you’re there already, you’re going to stop trying.
We all have desires of a certain way we would like to be and a certain life we would like to live. But we must take action to get there. By being honest, we help each other get closer to our real goals. By being honest, others usually decide to either give up or move closer to their desired outcome.
Sure, no one likes to be told that they need to improve certain aspects of their life but if they don’t see that their current position does not reflect what’s in their head or where they would like to be, then being honest and truthful might help them see the reality. They will thank you one day for your honesty.
4.Honesty and truth are one of the most important factors in relationships.
How will they be able to improve if they’re told that they’re perfect? By telling someone they’re perfect, they might as well give up on life because their job is done. Perfection has been attained.
Honesty is important because if you are lying whether they look fat in those pants, when they’ve clearly gained 10 pounds, they’re not going to trust you when it comes to more important matters. The pants are not able to lie…
5.A slippery slope to destruction.
If the issue is affecting you directly and you don’t speak up, you’re likely to be unhappy and feeling guilty about this issue that “you don’t talk about”. You might even be so annoyed that you think of life a part from this person. In this case, wouldn’t it be worth to talk about it rather than let the relationship crumble?
If you don’t speak up and say what’s important for you as an individual and what’s important for you in a relationship, then you will never be able to fix those problems. You won’t be living a truly satisfied existence in your relationship and it’s likely to cause more problems or death of a relationship.
6.The key to a successful relationship is communication.
If you can’t communicate what you need, who’s going to know? If you can talk about sensitive issues, then you can fix those issues. If no one talks, then how can it be fixed? The same goes for a friendship or a family relationship. Talking about the issue directly, will put you on the road to amendment.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article. I hope it has challenged your ideas or you agree or you disagree. All are great outcomes. If you would like to discuss anything about this post, we welcome comments at the bottom of the page.
Thanks for reading!
This article was written by Nick Hill content creator and co-founder of The Zen Media