How to Practice Honesty

Good morning and happy Thursday! May this be a great day for each of you! Today’s search that got my attention was “how can I practice honesty?” Allow me to address this from my perspective…

When you think about honesty, you are most likely thinking about not lying to others, not cheating, and not stealing. These are all behaviors to practice which lead you to be an honest person. But there is more to honesty than that.

Consider that honesty can be expanded to include how you share what you are thinking or feeling at any given moment. When you keep quiet if you are angry or hurt, for example, you are not displaying honesty. The solution is to speak up in a matter-of-fact way, without attacking the other person or making them wrong, and letting them know what you are feeling. You may want to take some time to process your feelings first.

It also has to do with being honest with yourself about your actions and behaviors. This is very difficult for many of us. We have trouble admitting to less-than-stellar behavior. Yet, to be considered an honest person, you must look at and admit to your non-perfect behavior, your bad behavior.

We all have it, you know. We all act poorly at times. You are not the only one. That’s because we are human beings with feelings and often don’t know how to deal with those feelings. And practicing honesty has to do with owning your negative behavior, apologizing when indicated.

This is another slant on honesty, and I hope it provides food for thought for you.

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How to Practice Honesty

Good morning everyone, and top of the day to you on this lovely Memorial Day Weekend! The search term was “how to practice honesty,” and today I’m going to address this and the ways in which honesty can show up for you in your life.

When I refer to honesty, I am certainly including being honest and not cheating, lying, or stealing. Yet, I want to address the ways in which to practice honesty with yourself and others about who you really are, what you really feel.

Do you avoid looking at yourself and owning your behavior, both positive and negative? This was me for my life until I had many years in sobriety. The issue was, I just couldn’t be honest with myself about who I was and what I’d done. I was terrified to do so, and too ashamed. And I certainly couldn’t see my good points.

Gradually, as I learned to manage my fear, I began to be able to take an honest look at myself, owning my behavior, my actions, my words, owning my greatness. Can you relate? Am I describing you?

Consider this… do you shrink away from practicing honesty about who and what you really are because of fear of what you will find, because of shame, or because you just don’t know that’s your job? If you are doing these things, I suggest there’s another way…

I suggest there is the way of looking yourself right in the eye, in the heart, and openly admitting to yourself exactly who and what you are. Some of this means admitting to your strengths, your beauty, your good points, your greatness. No more pretending to be small. Practice honesty!

Spend some time making a list of all your strong traits, all the things that make you a grand person. Don’t play small. Really sing your praises. Sit with that list when you’re done and just “be” with who and what you are at your core. Then, take a period of 3-4 days and track every good thought, word, and deed you had during that 3-4 days. Practice honesty about who you really are. Revel in your kindness, your goodness. Know that no one can take that away from you.

Then make a list of your not-so-good points, the times you were selfish, or arrogant, or unkind to others. Spend time being honest about this. Then, take a 3-4 day time period and consider all the unkind and mean things you thought, said, or did during that time period and list them out. You will have a list of areas for improvement.

This is an excellent time to practice honesty, as you list out even the things for which you hold shame or embarrassment. Apologize for harms done to others in order to set the slate clean. Then, move forward and try to improve upon that part of yourself.

So, practice honesty by performing a self-appraisal and really looking at your positive and negative points. When you are done, you will have an honest appraisal of yourself. You will discover more peace as a result of this appraisal.

 

 

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What Is Honesty?

Good morning and welcome to another wonderful day! Today’s three-time search term is “what is honesty?” and I will address that today.

In sobriety, I learned about honesty and it expanded my belief and understanding of it. Yes, it’s about not stealing, and it’s more than that for all of us. It includes how you show up in the world to others and to yourself.

For example, showing honesty also means being honest about your actions and behaviors. Many of us do not look honestly at our actions and behaviors, and we blame others for what is rightfully our issue. Especially when there is a controversy, we blame another for things that went wrong, when we refuse to look at what part we played in the altercation. It always takes two…

So, in this case, what is honesty? Well, it is owning your bad behavior. Honesty is admitting that you did a bad deed, or gossiped about someone, thereby smashing their spirit, for example. But again, the biggest offender of being honest is when you blame another before you look at what you brought to the disagreement. Let’s look at blaming others in more detail.

I spent 32 years blaming my parents for my emotional woes from my childhood wounds, but never once did I think of accepting responsibility for my feelings, being responsible for healing my own wounds. Once I learned that it was my job to heal myself, my life took off in a glorious direction.

Well, it wasn’t glorious at first; it was extremely painful. Yet, after looking squarely at my hurts, my wounds, it began to get glorious as I healed from one wound after another. It took learning to talk to myself in a positive light, learning that most of what I had been told was a lie, my parents’ own wounds talking to me. I began to realize I was not the person that they told me I was. This realization brought me much joy and happiness… as well as peace.

I invite you to stop blaming others for deeds done, and to look at yourself to determine how you can heal from what was told or done to you. That does not mean you ignore what was said or done… you are merely going through and past that to a place of higher “being” about it all. You are setting the stage for forgiveness.

I invite you to own your bad behavior and apologize when it’s appropriate. Be humble, not ashamed. Realize you are a human being who makes mistakes and admit to them. When you “come clean” with another person, their feelings for you will most likely soften. They will most always accept your apology and they also often then talk about what they brought to the incident, where they displayed bad behavior. Usually in these instances, showing up with honesty will lead to healing between you and the other person.

If you have difficulty going through this process, that’s where I can come in with my coaching services. These are the very type of situations I do well with… identifying how to get past blaming, how to own behavior, how to display honesty. If you are stuck at this point, feel free to contact me at 415-883-8325 and we can discuss how I might be of assistance to you, how we can work together to bring you relief.

I want you to have peace, you see, and this is one way to find it… by learning what is honesty…

 

 

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How to Practice Honesty

Hello, all, and welcome to another day. May it hold peace and goodness for each of you. The search term I was drawn to is “practicing honesty.” There is a misconception about what it means to be honest, and I’d like to address that.

In fact, I have a very recent experience to illustrate my own lack of honesty in a situation that led to being the recipient of verbal abuse. I live in a mobile home park, and my neighbor is currently having her place resided. One evening, I came home, pulled into my carport, and found her 10-foot x 1-foot wooden planter box at the front of my carport.

I was upset that my property was being used as the storage and overflow for her belongings, and especially without even asking me first. Also, I happen to think the planter box is ugly, along with the scrubby plants it contains. So, I called my neighbor to ask why the box had appeared in my carport. She had been unaware of it.

After establishing that it must have been the workers who moved it there, she asked if I wanted it moved. Here is where I was dishonest.  The truth was, I wanted it gone, but I was remembering all the times she has watched my cat when I travel, and so decided to cut some slack and allow it to remain.

What I told her was that I guessed it’d be okay to stay for a while while the work was being done. What I needed to have said to practice honesty was that I did mind and could she please have it moved the next day. Because I did not practice honesty… I was not honest… it led to a show-down when I asked her to move it a week-and-a-half later because I just could not look at it any longer every time I drove in. She pelted me with a barrage of verbal abuse, and now our relationship is less-than-ideal, to say the least.

My whole point here is, we often are not honest, don’t practice honesty, and mean one thing while we say another. We do this, perhaps, to avoid a scene or to avoid the wrath of another. In that process, we are not true to ourselves – not true to our beliefs and desires. And, in the end, the wrath may come anyway, as it did in my case.

Honesty can be passed along with gentleness; it doesn’t have to be brutal. We need to practice honesty by saying what we really are thinking or feeling. This keeps us in integrity.

In what way(s) can you practice honesty in your life, but don’t? Leave a comment and let us know.

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Bring to the World the Gift of Being Honest

One of the most important practices we can use to get and stay sober is being honest. By this, I mean not only cash-register honest, but honesty about who we are.

Cash register honesty means we don’t lie, cheat, or steal. But above and beyond that, we want to be honest with ourselves and  others about who we are inside.

We will need our honesty when we reach the exercise of doing a performance self-appraisal, where we will look at the both our positive and negative points, our strengths and things we have done well, and our weak areas. But for now, let’s focus on our positive traits.

There is a lot of talk about looking at our not-so-desireable traits, our dark side, if you will. But not much is said about considering and celebrating who we are on our positive side.

It is this that I urge us to do. We want to stop and take a deep breath. Then sit with, maybe write down, all the good things about ourselves. How were we kind to others in the recent past… tolerant, compassionate?

What are our strong qualities and traits that we want to consider? It is okay to acknowledge these to ourselves and others, as we become more honest about who we are.

We are each here for the special message we hold for others, and when we are not honest with others about our good points, we keep our value from them, thus denying them a valuable experience, maybe even a healing experience. And we deny ourselves the pleasure of being of service to another.

When we look at our positive points, we do so with humility, being neither boastful nor shame-filled. We just state the facts with no emotion attached. This may be difficult for us to do, having been trained not to brag about ourselves. Yet, with humility, we can avoid bragging.

Today, take the time to sit and reflect upon your good traits, the ones that make you unique, the ones that feed your soul when you are engaging in them. Once you have identified them, celebrate them. Congratulate yourself and know these are your gifts, the things that make you, you.

Know that those are your gifts that you are intended to bring to the world, and know that you cannot do that unless and until you are totally honest with others about who you are inside. It starts with being honest to yourself.

Once you are able to ferret out your positive traits and goodnesses, you will experience more peace about yourself. That’s what happened for me, at any rate. It was just a deep knowingness that I was okay as a person. It allowed me more ability to stay sober and to live sober. I hope you find that to be true also.

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Living Your Dream with Honesty

Honesty is one of the things that holds your dream up; it cements it, just like a weld of two pieces of metal.

How do you apply honesty to your dream? Well, you consider the divine plan for yourself, and if you feel strongly in your heart that you are following that plan, then you are being honest about your true nature. You are practicing honesty.

If, on the other hand, you are having urgings to follow a dream and are not doing so, you are not practicing being honest with yourself or your divine Source.

It is dishonest not to be true to ourselves, and if that includes needing to follow a dream which is divinely supported, so be it.

How can you switch from dishonesty to honesty? You can admit to your heart’s urgings, admit to your dream. Then, start taking action to follow it. You do the next indicated thing that is in your path to do. Over time, you will be experiencing your dream.

When you keep doing the action, you get closer and closer to fulfilling your needs. You will experience peace when you are engaging in your dream, because you are in sync with your soul.

So, go forth and demonstrate honesty about your dream. Admit it to yourself, speak up about it and then follow through to get there. You can do it, you’ll be amazed!

 

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Staying Sober Using a Performance Appraisal

One of the most powerful tools we can use to get and stay sober is a performance appraisal. This is something we want to learn to do on an on-going, daily basis. Performing a self-appraisal will lead us to peace.

We are looking at all our curls, our shades of tan and rust, so-to-speak, as well as our shadows, our dark side. Right in the middle of it all, we will find our heart, shining brightly.

How do we do a performance appraisal? We begin by listing out our positive points, the ways in which we treat ourselves and others with kindness, tolerance, and respect.

We add to that list the things that we do well. We do this objectively and honestly, knowing that we are not bragging or flaunting our positiveness; rather, we are getting to the bottom of who we are at our core.

Next, we write down all the ways in which we have hurt others, ways we have been intolerant, unkind, disrespectful, ways we have hurt them spiritually. It takes courage to admit to these things, yet, it is necessary to illuminate our being.

Remember, we are looking for our heart that shines, like the knob in the picture above. Once we have listed out our positive and negative aspects, we want to next list out people with which we are angry or resentful, and why. Look at this list carefully. This is the key to the performance appraisal. This is the key to peace.

We look at the third list and notice what has angered us about others’ actions. Now, consider all the times we did the very same things for which we are angry. If we are honest with ourselves, I believe we will find that we have, in fact, done most or all of these things ourselves.

Once we discover this, we allow it to sink in to a very deep level. Recognize that we, as well as the other person with whom we are angry, is human, that we are displaying our humanness. We take this information and “be” with it for a while, not to beat ourselves up, but to realize that we, too, do things which are not kind, not tolerant, not respectful. We don’t like to look at these things about ourselves, yet, they are key to finding sobriety and peace.

Given this realization, we can feel our “aha!” moment. Once we realize that we do the very things we are angry at another for, we can let go of our anger with compassion for both the other person and ourselves.

There will be things for which we are angry that we have not done ourselves, such as abuse. For these, there is a way to get to forgiveness, and we will discuss that when we come to forgiveness.

With our lists, we have a good idea of who we are at a soul level. We can celebrate our positive points and resolve to do things differently to manage our negative side. To do that, we ask for help from our Source. We also talk to someone that we trust to relay what we have found so we don’t keep it bottled up inside to “stew” on.

Today, look at yourself in a new light. Take the time to conduct a performance appraisal and discover the delightful and not-so-delightful things about yourself. Use this list objectively, to improve yourself. Know that once you have looked at yourself in this new light, it is something you want to do daily to keep yourself on track.

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Are You Honest About Who You Are?

One of the most important practices we can use to get and stay sober is being honest. By this, I mean not only cash-register honest, but honesty about who we are.

Cash register honesty means we don’t lie, cheat, or steal. But above and beyond that, we want to be honest with ourselves and  others about who we are inside.

We will need our honesty when we reach the exercise of doing a performance self-appraisal, where we will look at the things we have done to harm others, as well as consider the things we are mad at others for. But for now, let’s focus on our positive traits.

There is a lot that is talked about regarding looking at our not-so-desireable traits, our dark side, if you will. But not much is said about considering and celebrating who we are on our positive side.

It is this that I urge us to do. We want to stop and take a deep breath. Then sit with, maybe write down, all the good things about ourselves. How were we kind to others in the recent past, tolerant, compassionate?

What are our strong qualities and traits that we want to consider? It is okay to acknowledge these to ourselves and others, as we become more honest about who we are.

We are each here for the special message we hold for others, and when we are not honest with others about our good points, we keep our value from them, thus denying them a valuable experience, maybe even a healing experience. We deny ourselves the pleasure of being of service to another.

When we look at out positive points, we do so with humility, being neither boastful nor shame-filled. We just state the facts with no emotion attached. This may be difficult for us to do, having been trained not to brag about oneself. Yet, with humility, we can avoid bragging.

Today, take the time to sit and reflect upon your good traits, the ones that make you unique, the ones that feed your soul when you are engaging in them. Once you have identified them, celebrate them. Congratulate yourself and know these are your gifts, the things that make you, you.

Know that those are your gifts that you are intended to bring to the world, and know that you cannot do that unless and until you are totally honest with others about who you are inside.

 

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How to Do a Performance Appraisal of Yourself

Today it is time for a performance appraisal of yourself, a search of self. This is the next topic in the book. It is the second reference to looking at yourself, your behavior and your actions. The first was in the blog about honesty.

Search of Self

But this time, when doing an appraisal, take a look at yourself with the eyes of the soul. You are looking for your heart, right in the middle of everything you are, which is sometimes muddled, sometimes messy.

We are all human. We all have swirls and shadows, shades of tan and rust… darkness and light. Do you recognize and acknowledge your humanness, your good, your bad?

You see, resiliency of spirit lies in the ability to see yourself as a falable human being, who is not perfect, who makes mistakes. The beauty of it all is that among all these swirls and shadows, your heart is there in the middle, shining brightly, truthfully. It knows the truth of who you are.

All you have to do is find it, to feel it. In your heart, you know when you are treating yourself or another poorly. You know. So, after being honest with yourself about it, you can do a  do-over, a retake. You can get humble and apologize.

How do you apologize when, during a performance appraisal of yourself, you find that you have wronged yourself? You can acknowledge it, first of all. Then, you can see yourself with compassion, trying to get to the root of why you are treating yourself poorly. Is it an old message of worthlessness that plagues you? Do you not feel worthy of better treatment, taking good care of yourself?

Once you ferret out the reasons behind your poor treatment of yourself, be sure to apply compassion, but not humiliation. Do not beat yourself up. Smile at the small and child-like person you were when you did whatever it was you did, or did not do. Like I said before, apologize and change your behavior.

This applies to the appraisal of yourself, as well as to an appraisal of how you treat others. They key is willingness to look at yourself, again and again, and to correct what you find. You will always find darkness. But it is changeable, if you choose.

There is always light, also. Always. And sometimes you have to find the courage to recognize and admit to your positive points. If you were bullied or told you were no good at any point in your life, this may be difficult. Stick with it; it will come with time and commitment.

To find the recesses of your heart and its kind and gentle nature, it always helps to ask that greater power to assist you in your search.

Do you have trouble finding the bright knob of your heart when you do a performance appraisal of yourself? What does it feel like for you to acknowledge your goodness? How about your dark side? Can you adjust your thoughts and behavior when the dark side comes out?

Can you let your heart overrule that darkness? I hope you are able to see in yourself that shining heart, right in the middle of all that you do and all that you are, and that you can let it override your darkness.

 

 

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Hopefulness As A Way of Life

Ray of Hope

” A ray of light across the bars of my being lights my way, instills hope in my heart”

As we blog our way through the topics of my book, we now arrive at hope. We have begun with great angst – fear, sorrow, and despair. Then, we became aware of ourselves, our situation, how we are in the world. Courage was bestowed upon us when we turned to a sacred force for assistance.

We became willing to look at ourselves with honesty and openness as we performed a self-appraisal, which led us to accept ourselves. As we looked at ourselves, we applied compassion and kindness, the same of which we bestow upon those we meet on our path.

Once we have a sense of ourselves in the world, our role, our interactions, we begin to have hope  – that we are okay as a human being, that others can be trusted, that we can find happiness in ourselves and the world around us. This hope has occurred because of the process we have been through up to this point.  We are beginning to feel more complete and whole, which spurs our hope. We continue to feel hope as we repeat the steps discussed up to this point. It is an on-going cycle that breeds more hope.

What are the ways in which you feel hope in your life?

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As the award-winning author and photographer of her book of inspirational prose and photographs of wrought-iron gates, it is said by others that Carolyn CJ Jones’ book offers inspiration, hope, and empowerment to those in transition, to those souls in the corner who struggle. View the video about the book; stroll through the pages, both of which are located to the right of this blog. Buy the book from Carolyn’s website  and receive free shipping and your personally autographed copy.

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