What I Love…. The Word Transparency

I keep coming across the word transparency in regards to behavior. Contextually, it was about being honest with ourselves, our family, our friends, our neighbors, our constituents. I sat thinking about transparency and how it effects me in my relationships with others and with the world. I realized how my with-holding and my fear holds me back and keeps me unconnected and out of communication. As I was contemplating, a song came on my slacker radio station: Lupe Fiasco’s “Words I Never Said”, as if right on queue. I listened to the lyrics and realized, that the last few words of that song were amazing. He sings: “Fear is such a weak emotion thats why I despise it. We scared of almost everything, afraid to even tell the truth. So scared of what you think of me, I’m scared of even telling you”. He mentions that because we live in fear of telling the truth, we are stuck inside of ourselves.

Sometimes,  we are our own worst enemies, we hide ourselves so people will like us or we use lies to get what we want and manipulate others – the government/political realm is notorious for not saying the truth, but spinning it to gain power, just watch or read the news and you will see it right away.

I watched a movie not long ago called “The Invention of Lying”. What struck me about the fictitious world created in this movie is that everyone told the truth, but the truth was mean, ugly, and fearful. Everyone was miserable. The idea behind inventing lying was that it makes us happy; it makes other people happy. While I loved that movie and it made me laugh, I have to disagree with the premise. I think it’s the fear that makes the truth ugly and why we hide it is because of fear. The truth can be ugly, but it gets even uglier when we pretend it doesn’t exist. It also makes us miserable, because we know we’re lying and being inauthentic. I believe inauthenticity breeds misery, especially when we are denying ourselves our true feelings.

Being transparent is much easier said than done. I should know – I’m a fantastic chameleon and a bad communicator about my emotions. I can pretend to agree with someone when I don’t or pretend to be into things that I don’t really like. I also like to sweep everything difficult under the rug and pretend it’s not there, but every time, it manages to creep out and bite me, right where it hurts the most – my heart. It doesn’t make me happy and it doesn’t make those around me happy if I don’t speak truths or with-hold my real feelings.

My challenge to myself is to be transparent, be authentic, speak the truth first of all to myself, and then to those around me. It’s not easy to be honest and hold ourselves accountable, some people are better at it then others, but all great things that come out of life are not easy. We have to be uncomfortable in order to grow. Lupe Fiasco says in his song “I can’t take back the words I never said,” but I believe it’s never too late to say the things you meant to say.

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