For as long as I can remember I’ve been a truth seeker. Truth seeking keeps my blood pumping. It’s my oxygen.
It’s also a curse. Because it leads me to truth telling.
You see, truth seeking is the easy part. Truth telling can be like walking a knife’s edge. It can be liberating and dangerous all at the same time.
I wrote those last two sentences in a comment on someone else’s blog last night and it occurred to me how much of a theme this has become in my life. How I find it hard to speak my truth. Because when I do it somehow gets lost in translation and it backfires.
Before truly registering this, I woke up this morning and the theme played out once again before my eyes. Gulp. I did it again.
I’m not sure what possesses me to want to wear my heart on my sleeve. I’m not sure if I mis-read situations or if people mis-read me. I’m a passionate and fiery girl. I want so much to be gentle and serene. But I’m not these things. I take risks. I plunge in. I’m overtaken by a ridiculous saint-like notion that I need to speak my truth!
But guess what? Lots of people don’t give a damn about the truth.
The world is full of people with diverse views and personalities. I am aware that not everyone will appreciate or ‘get’ me. Nor I them. I do understand these things. Still, when I get shot down in flames, I get wounded. I am human.
Be free of rejection… people are allowed to not like you. People are allowed to not agree with you or to think bad of you. In fact, rejection will trick you into moving in manipulation to try and take away someone else’s choice to have their own opinion of you. ~Mark Kenney
That is the hard part to swallow.
I admit that when people don’t like me or my opinion it can sometimes sting. And if it is a public disagreement then it can feel humiliating. It makes me question if I ever had the truth (which is entirely possible!) But mainly, I feel misunderstood. And I hate that feeling most of all.
The worst thing about my tendency to speak my mind is that it’s coupled with a crippling sensitivity. Skin as thin as paper. It’s borne out of adversity. It’s my baggage. In my own private world I own it and unpack it daily. Given this, I still don’t think it’s too much to ask for some sensitivity and etiquette when it comes to social exchanges.
Truth telling via social media is the worst kind. Nothing botches up the lines of communication like a comment on a forum or a status update. Messages are misunderstood and jumbled. Written word is notoriously hard to read for nuances, humour, emotion, and context. Especially the context. And in truth telling the context is me. My history and my personality. A friend could make allowances for it, but total strangers may not. Truth telling to the world requires oodles of eloquence and clarity. Things I feel limited by even on my best days.
Above all, truth telling requires discernment. Possessing the judgement of how and when or even if to tell it. The decision to reveal or conceal. And that’s the part I lack. I’m working on it.
There are some good things about truth telling of course… It can be exquisitely liberating. The truth will set you free.
When you give yourself permission to communicate what matters to you in every situation you will have peace despite rejection or disapproval. Putting a voice to your soul helps you to let go of the negative energy of fear and regret. ~ Shannon L. Adler
There’s also a part of me that thinks truth telling is a good way of weeding out rotten wood. Who cares if I’m not popular? Who cares if people don’t understand me? Because I don’t need that kind of energy in my life anyway.
So my bleeding-heart got a little wounded again today. I’ll brush it off my sleeve. I’ll armour myself a bit more next time. I’ll lighten up. I’ll try to read situations better.
This truth telling business is a messy one. With a scrap of wisdom and a wispy-thin skin, I proceed.
But first… I’ll take a deep breath.
And maybe a little lie down.
* Image by brightandprecious.com