Let’s face it, being brutally honest with ourselves isn’t always easy. It’s like looking in a mirror, not just to admire our reflection, but to really see what’s there – flaws and all.
Many of us struggle with self-honesty. We avoid confronting uncomfortable truths, often to our own detriment.
Drawing from my own journey and experience as an executive coach, with a specialization in Industrial Psychology, I’ve distilled six effective strategies that have personally worked for me, my clients, and countless others.
You’re here because you’re ready to face the truth, no matter how challenging it might be.
This article will help you be honest with yourself in a way that’s self-compassionate and accepting.
Here are 6 ways to be honest with yourself.
1. Commit to finding your truth
Self-honesty is basically telling yourself the truth about you.
Your true self can handle it.
However, it takes a lot of self awareness and courage.
To do this, develop a close relationship with yourself.
You’ll find this article helpful for How to Find Yourself Again: 4 Soulful Steps.
Begin with committing to your true self. This first step is part of uncovering your truth and it takes time.
Be honest with yourself along the way and be your own best friend.
In addition, here’s a 10 minute YouTube video I made on The 6 Ways to Be True to Yourself.
2. No more self-rejection
Most people I work with tend to be critical of themselves at the start of our work together.
However, we’re human, we have many feelings, and we have the ability to transform our lives.
Nathaniel Branden is a self-esteem expert who wrote Honoring the Self: Self-Esteem and Personal Transformation.
He’s found that people who don’t make progress in the problems that they’re having, and don’t seem to move on, and they don’t seem to solve them, at the heart of it, they’re self-rejecting.
And so it is really important that as we’re looking at ourselves honestly, we do it with self-compassion, instead of rejecting ourselves.
Because we don’t tend to grow from a place of rejection.
We grow from a place of compassion and self-love, so our self-talk needs to be empowering.
3. Talk to someone vibing where you are
Speaking aloud to someone you feel safe with can reveal truths that are lurking below the surface.
Sometimes we hear ourselves say something SO true for ourselves that we’re surprised to hear it verbalized.
We can only do this kind of honest sharing with people who have a vibration high enough to hold the space with us.
This may sound like a new concept to you, so please read How to Raise Your Vibration: 9 Ways to Invite the Good Vibes In
This article talks about the how the universe is energy, including thoughts, emotions, and people we choose to share our hearts with!
How do you know who to trust?
It’s hard to know who you can trust because people become good at wearing masks.
According to Psyche Central, “A personality mask allows those who wear them to hide their real self from others. While masks can serve as a barrier of protection for your self-esteem and hurt, they can also lead to stress, depression, anxiety, and exhaustion.”
Talk with a trusted friend, therapist, religious or spiritual leader, mentor, etc., to help you feel good and express your feelings.
4. Recognize your shadow side
Self-honesty is the foundation for which the soul moves forward and evolves. And, the part of ourselves that we hide from others is called the shadow.
The shadow are parts that we avoid looking at, but they’re following us everywhere we go.
Shadow has two sides
Maybe it’s our laziness, our insecurity, our denial, our fear, how angry we are, or our jealousy.
We all have this black bag that we carry around with our own set of shadow qualities.
Our shadow qualities are an important part of who we are because we learn from them.
We learn from our fear and our anger and our laziness, whatever it is, we notice it. We notice that it causes us pain, and then we learn from it.
So if we ignore these parts to ourselves, then we’re ignoring a great opportunity to learn and to grow.
Accept your shadow side
Even though it’s very popular on social media to say that we’re all flawed and imperfect and we accept it… it’s still hard to accept our shadow side.
According to BetterUp.com, Your shadow is “the dark and emotional aspect of your psyche.”
As a life coach, I encourage my clients to enter into a state of self-forgiveness. However, I have to ask myself:
Have I truly forgiven myself for things that I regret?
Let’s be honest, that’s a horse of a different color.
5. Self awareness
This one hurts… but there’s not a person I’ve met that hasn’t done some dumb thing they’ve allowed to happen.
So, you’re in good company.
You can ask yourself, what low standards have I tolerated?
We get what we allow
Because the truth is we get what we allow.
It’s hard to admit, as I look at some of the things I’VE ALLOWED… and I can’t believe it.
But…. I did.
Unfortunately, I have plenty of personal experience with this.
I allowed situations to continue in my life because I was either afraid to change them or I didn’t know how to change them.
The honesty comes in when you admit to yourself, I am allowing this. Then make the change, do something to change direction.
6. Self forgiveness
Self-forgiveness is a deep and personal process in building your relationship with yourself.
Medical intuitive Carolyn Myss, believes that self-forgiveness of things from our past heals us.
A good example is…. I said something on purpose that I know hurt someone’s feelings.
Now, I’m not the worst person in the world, but clearly, I’m not the nicest.
Can I forgive myself?
In my head, the quick answer is SURE! I had my reasons!
I’m afraid the honest answer is… I’m working on it.
Your authentic self is comprised of many sides… we are complex beings.
How to work on self forgiveness
Start being honest with yourself about what you haven’t forgiven yourself for.
We feel it to heal it.
That’s the bottom line and it takes a lifetime. At least for me, it has so far…
Here’s a deeper dive into emotional release methods to help you feel and heal.
Choose techniques that resonate with you and meet you where you’re at in your life. Be honest with what you can and can’t do.
Be it tapping, crying, walking and crying, walking and breathing… whatever helps you feel and heal.
NOTE: With emotional release, do what you feel safe doing and see a professional if you can’t do it alone.
Self forgiveness audio
Here are affirmations to forgive yourself for past mistakes to help you on your path to self-forgiveness.
The short audio is spoken by me personally, and I understand the long road to self-forgiveness.
It’s a journey, so be patient with yourself.
Is it possible to be completely honest?
Or, the more honest answer is, I’ll let you know when I get there.
Being honest with yourself, most people, and the world takes courage.
Complete honesty might require a mind quiet enough, a heart healed enough, and a soul present enough to see the truth.
I imagine it’s possible.
Final thoughts: how to be honest with yourself
This article will hopefully help you with how to be honest with yourself.
Seeing yourself with gentleness and compassion is at the heart of a better relationship with yourself and be your own best friend.
Follow the suggestions above so that you’ll grow a more honest relationship with you and begin feeling a strong sense of soulfulness.
The path to your own soul is paved with your ability to be honest with yourself in life… without self-rejection.