We live in a culture that worships success and confidence. Mistakes are embarrassing, so we try to hide our inadequacies and vulnerabilities to appear in control. However if we’re honest about exactly who we are there’s nothing left to hide. If we accept ourselves as we are, strengths and weaknesses, it’s easier to cope with any criticisms that come our way.”Yip, that’s me!” We’re now free to listen to what the other person has to say rather than just thinking of ways to defend ourselves. Defensiveness never leads to good communication.
The truth is of course not always welcome but I’d far rather someone be honest with me if they feel I’ve done something wrong. I really don’t enjoy people putting on a fake politeness. “Oh there’s nothing wrong” they proclaim but all the body language tells me otherwise. Tell me if I’ve got spinach stuck in my teeth!
We also lie to ourselves because it can be less painful than facing up to our flaws. If we can be honest about ourselves and who we really are, the resulting emotional freedom can be truly liberating.
So it all starts in the mind and what we believe about ourselves and living life. If you make a mistake, accept it as part of being human, apologize if necessary and move on. It’s okay!
“You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32)
Click here for my related post on how to successfully deal with anger and criticism.