Be happy. It's one way of being wise.

~ Sidonie Gabrielle Colette ~

The Real Deal

February 18th, 2013 ~ Est. reading time: 2 mins, 39 secs

Do you hunger for real relationship?

Have you ever been disappointed by people not being real with their intentions? How many times do people pretend to be your friend when in reality they only want your things, contacts, or to use you in some other way?

We want the real deal. But, too often in relationships, we find something far less. Why is that? The reason is simple: honesty is a rarity.

Even people closest to us sometimes dodge the truth to avoid embarrassment. Friends often don’t want to point out areas where we need to improve for fear of offending us. Yet, because being real is vital, it’s helpful to have people in your life that won’t gloss problems over. Every one of us needs somebody who will tell us what they see.

I follow a basic principle about being real in relationship. The more honest you can both be together, the deeper the bond. For every no go zone there’s a no man’s land of doubt. Whereas, deep friendships are totally okay about letting everything hang out.

Some people are bloody-minded about the truth. Being real to them means a military grilling under harsh lights (i.e. “Unless you tell me everything I want to know, I won’t trust you.”). But that’s actually not about being genuine so much as fear and control.

The real deal in any relationship, be it between friends, lovers, or even in business, is the willingness to offer honesty. Doing so does two things:

  1.    It lets the other person know what’s really going on, past or present, and
  2.    It reflects integrity.

People who are the real thing in whatever context we meet them are prepared to risk rejection for the sake of being genuine. Integrity matters to them more than what they can get by being deceptive. Why? Because they value character.

So, somebody with a shady past who discloses their failings shows more integrity than the squeaky-clean sort who hides their agendas. Real people risk relationship quantity for relationship quality.

Being hurt now and then by the sharp nick of truthfulness is nothing compared to the agony of deep deceit. Real people understand that unintentionally upsetting others is better than lying (though, it’s a sad fact that many people prefer being lied to than face the truth).

I find so many anonymous folk on the Web, Facebook, and Twitter anything but real. They like to create an image to impress and sometimes deliberately deceive. Twitter types who shyster their way into your life strike me as desperate and pathetic. For as long as they see people as another notch on their belt, they really have nothing to give. They remain merely hollow and shallow.

Thankfully, there are plenty of exceptional folk who do exude qualities of character. Like you, each of these people is wonderfully real and refreshing. And, together, they inspire us all to do well by each other and, even, ourselves.

So don’t waste your time with people who are unwilling to be the real deal with you. If they are trying to sell you something, walk away. Seek people prepared to treat you as an equal and risk a bit of real relationship in the process.

Speak truthfully yet tenderly with all so that people can be left in no doubt who you are and that you value integrity (as much as any wonderfully imperfect human being can).

Be real and tactfully accept nothing less in life from everyone else you rely on. That way, you will be saying loud and clear that honesty matters. Not in some high-handed haughty way, but with genuine sincerity. It takes courage to be authentic. But in return you will attract people who deeply value and respect you, just for being who you really are.

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