20 – Honesty
Honesty refers to the truthfulness or high morals of a person. Think of it as a mirror, reflecting a person’s values. An honest person can be trusted at all times and under any circumstance. It is a quality that is very rare to find, yet highly precious once you do. Be truthful in everything you say and do. This includes not exaggerating to make things seem different from what they are and admitting when you are wrong or made an error. Encourage others to be truthful as well. Allow genuine honesty to be cultivated within you. In the clarity of your conversations or interactions, this will be revealed to others.
Characteristics of Honesty:
- Believability. An obvious characteristic of honesty is believability. An honest person can be believed at all times. Your words are not doubted or questioned. There is no reason for ambiguity, as honesty is a consistent virtue.
- Sincerity. An honest person is straightforward and genuine in their intentions. There is feeling behind the truth, and it is heartfelt concern and candor built into their interaction. It is not without meaning, but rather, it is genuine and authentic. There is an earnest virtue in a truthful soul.
- Trustworthiness. This can be earned by continually being truthful and gaining trust. It is believed that you will always be truthful based on your history of honesty. You have attained this classification by past behavior. It is a condition of always being trusted. People can count on you for your word. You’ve earned it.
- Simplicity. Being honest is a method of keeping your life simple and complications-free. While problems will always find their way into your life, deception will not complicate them. As Mark Twain said, “If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.” That’s a simplification.
- Fairness. While the results of being honest may not always seem fair, the process and the act of being honest are fair. It is important to be truthful and, if necessary, face the consequences of your actions. Be honest and show integrity in everything you do and speak. This will help to eliminate avoidable negative outcomes.
- Freedom. The truth will set you FREE! This includes freedom and clarity of the body, mind, and soul.
- Facts. Honesty involves truth and facts, clearly stated.
- Transparency. Being truthful in what you say also involves transparency and openness. There is no deceit or hidden agendas. Words aren’t deceivingly spoken to entrap an alternate meaning. Rather, the words are clear, and the meaning is obvious. There is no ambiguity or need for further verification. The information is all laid out and exposed.
- Just. Recognize your bias and act to correct it if needed. Be honest with yourself and stay focused on what is right, honest, and just.
- Honor. You honor yourself as well as others when you are honest. There is mutual respect, knowing the strength and bravery involved with truthful admission. Even though it is always expected to be truthful, it is still always the honorable thing to do and a way to act.
- Positivity. By releasing false fears, positivity is gained by maintaining a good attitude. There is beauty in truth, and there is also positive energy.
- Joy. There is so much joy acquired from being truthful. You align with your values, which is right with your mind. When you are dishonest, you violate your belief system, which disturbs your sense of peace and well-being. When you are honest, even though it may have been challenging to admit, there is a freeing of your spirit. Your mind, body, and soul are set free with the truth. You will experience joy, peace, and contentment with every honest encounter.
- Humility. Sometimes being honest may involve humbling yourself to bring about the truth. Let go of the ego you may have in being careless with your words or exaggerating to make yourself look good. Being humble will actually strengthen your character and build your reputation. Also, honestly look at and acknowledge how others have helped you along the way. Give credit where credit is due.
- Respect. Honor others with your honesty. Show them respect and value their importance by being truthful. Honesty also instills a sense of self-respect and confidence in yourself.
- Courage. It takes courage to overcome fear when being honest is tough. An honest mentality gives you the strength to face difficulties. The process of speaking the truth makes us confident. What we say and act upon is supported by facts and our own integrity. This builds strength and self-worth, perpetuating more courage to do the right thing.
- Discipline. Choose behavior that avoids the temptation to be dishonest. Honesty builds discipline as you are to function within the guidelines of integrity. You must make difficult choices. The easy choices are often not in your best interest or that of your staff or company in general. Show constraint and discretion as you navigate the muddy waters, and carefully make decisions that align with your morals and values.
- Responsibility. Know that honesty is expected of you. It is imperative to be an honest person. And included in a leadership role, you are expected to be truthful and build a trustworthy reputation with those you oversee. Someone is always watching how you execute your skills in successful moments as well as challenging ones. Be accountable to your position as a leader, parent, guardian, older sibling, etc. It is your responsibility to be honest.
- Diligence. Be diligent, stay focused, and give an honest effort. At times it may become difficult to be truthful, especially since not everyone shares your same moral compass. Raise your standards to your Creator rather than the sinful human nature. Choose to use your discretion and always be honest with every decision you make.
Honesty is a virtue that should be instilled in all children from the day they are born. From this very young age and after that, the importance of truthfulness should be exemplified and continued throughout life. Always be honest and encourage the same in others.
“If you abide in my Word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31-32
“Peace, if possible, truth at all costs.” Martin Luther
“Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters.” Albert Einstein
“Truth is the property of no individual but is the treasure of all men.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Honesty is more than not lying. It is truth telling, truth speaking, truth living, and truth loving.”
What are your thoughts about this quality?
Who will you share this with?