We have all been taught from when we were children that “Honesty Is The Best Policy.”  What wasn’t stressed to us then is that we need not only be honest with other people, but we also need to be honest with ourselves.

As I have said, the first thing is to be honest with yourself. You can never have an impact on society if you have not changed yourself… Great peacemakers are all people of integrity, of honesty, but humility.

Nelson Mandela

Being honest with yourself can sometimes be hard but highly satisfying. For many of us we are in the habit of ignoring the negative aspects of our lives.  We only choose to see what we want to see, but we ignore what we don’t want to see.

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If we aren’t honest with ourselves, then we can’t expect to learn and grow as individuals.  We have to be willing to recognize reality for what it is before we can change it.  Honesty is a large part of self-improvement and overcoming delusional thinking about ourselves.  Being dishonest with ourselves may provide short-term pleasure, but it can be very destructive in the long run.  

Being honest with ourselves can sometimes be painful, but it’s a necessary component to long-term happiness and success in our lives. 

Being honest may not get you a lot of friends but it’ll always get you the right ones.

John Lennon

Here are some practices to help you to become more honest with yourself.

  • Look at both the positive and negative:  Don’t ignore your responsibilities and ways in which you know you need to grow.
  • Take time to think:  Ask yourself, “How did things go today? What did I do right? What could I have done better?”
  • Be truthful:  Admit it when you make mistakes and give yourself credit when it is due.
  • Don’t ignore your feelings:  Your emotions can tell you a lot about what is going on inside your mind, which, in turn, may affect your actions.
  • Get an outside perspective:  Find someone you trust to be honest with you about how you are doing.
  • Avoid the self-blame trap:  Sometimes bad things happen to good people.  The way you react to these instances is the way you can determine your success or failure.
  • Trust your intuition:  The more you work at it, the more you will learn when to trust your gut.
  • Be flexible with your beliefs:  Accept that you don’t know everything and be open to learning different perspectives.
  • Practice makes perfect:  Being honest does not happen overnight, it takes practice and vigilance to make it a natural reaction in your life.  

The successful man is himself. To be successful, you’ve got to be honest with yourself.

Vince Lombardi

When honesty meets your willingness to change, there is no telling the ways you can grow and improve.  Becoming totally honest will help you bring precision to your desires and attain your life goals.  More importantly, it will help you maintain your honor and self-respect.

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