Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Can You Handle the Truth? (Read Time: 3 min.)

Are you the kind of person who can hear anything from anyone without lashing out?

Can you receive the truth as well as you give it?

Do you listen to people or are you simply waiting for your turn to speak?

What does it mean when the people closest to you feel that they have to lie to you in order to be loved by you?

Oh yes, I'm talking to you... and I'm talking to me. Whenever we run into someone who has "lied" to us, the first response is to say "That person is a liar. He or she lacks integrity, respect and cannot be trusted. I will not associate myself with someone like that." Maybe you never said it out loud but I can guarantee that you thought it. But, here's the thing: people are mirrors of each other. We see in others what we hide in ourselves. And the question becomes this:

Whenever you experience a pattern of lying people in your life,
what lies are you telling yourself and what truths are you unwilling or not ready to hear?

At the end of the day, there will be those who lie to you because lying is what they do. It is their reality and they don't know how to exist in any other way but to distort the truth. Those people, however, will be the exception and not the rule. For the most part, people will lie to you because they are afraid of telling you the truth. They fear your judgment. They question your loyalty. They don't know if you can handle who they really are and they lie in the hopes that maybe you'll never have to find out.

But the joke's on them because living a facade gets old fast. At some point, we all have to show up and be exactly who we are. When the walls come down and the lies fade and the real person shows up, your response to that "real" person will prove to you why they lied in the first place. Most of us don't do a good job accepting people for who they are. We see what they show us and our response is "Be different." Liars get that. They understand that you aren't ready to see them for who they really are, that you wouldn't accept them if you did, and that the only way they can have a place in your heart or mind is by occupying an unreal role in your life.

That doesn't make it right. A lie is still a lie. If you're going to live in truth, you have to be able to receive truth. You've got to believe people when they show you who they are. There is no being real when two people are standing around doing the impression management thing. Until you can stand in your own power and until you can say with no apologies "This is me", you will find yourself surrounded by people who do anything but reveal themselves to you.

If what you want are people who will be real with you, then what you need to do is be a person who can take realness and not cringe, judge, shame, or blame it but embrace it and make clear, compassionate decisions with the information that's been presented. You don't have to have someone in your life who lies to you but you do have to be willing to see and accept the truth when people (in large and small ways) show you who they are.

Don't ask yourself why people lie to you. Ask yourself, "How can I be a person who people feel comfortable telling the truth to?" Again, it's not about them changing. It's about you being MORE of who you are, with or without their participation.

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