Can the Truth Really Set You Free?

Photo courtesy of Tiago Pinheiro

Do you feel like you’re on a search for truth as you make your way through the world, dodging hyperbole as you go?  For a long time it was the opposite for me. I felt like I was blatantly avoiding some hard truths in my own life. I buried my head in the sand, thinking that avoidance would keep me safe and help me hide from the truth.

Looking back, I thought I knew my own truth for a very long time, but only on a subconscious level. Knowing your truth and acting on it are two very different concepts, because when you finally begin to share your truth with others, they will react accordingly. Those who have different truths and beliefs will potentially be hurt or offended.

Staying silent when you know your own truth is perhaps one of the most detrimental forms of dishonesty. It has been called the ‘Disease to Please’ and curing yourself can be quite difficult. If you question your own truth, you may end up trying to please others forever.

But here’s some food for thought – some people who are convinced that they know their own truths may actually be wrong.

Is it possible to be wrong about your own truth?

People in the public eye are the most notorious of all for not living truthfully – we see examples of this in the news, in Hollywood, in politics and in professional sports. Our society seems to be riddled with untruths everywhere we turn. If everybody’s doing it, then why can’t we?

Should we give up on honesty and truth?

We should not give up on truth! It is empowering and liberating, even while it may be complicated. Living untruthfully can ruin just about anything - including your health, according to recent research presented at the American Psychological Association’s 120th Annual Convention.

In order for you to live a truly authentic and (mostly) truthful life, you’ve got to really get in touch with yourself. Having the confidence to live a truthful life is never easy, because it means taking responsibility for all of your actions and decisions. Be able to answer for yourself with self-assurance. What you know to be true for you may not sit well with others, but what matters is that it works for you, and that you feel good about your decisions.

As important as it is to live your truth, remember that others around you are attempting the same thing, and their truth may not look like truth at all to you. Only when you can learn to accept other people as they present you with their truths is when the truth really will set you free.

I’d like to leave you with an open-ended, thought provoking concept today.

Does absolute truth exist?

If everyone’s versions of the truth are ’right’, even if only for them (I imagine Hitler thought his truth was ‘absolute truth’), what then?

My truth, your truth, we all fall down?

Spread the word!

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    • Jess Kogel

      I had this internal debate right before I turned 28 after realizing that I was a verbal punching bag for people to vent their frustrations at and to. I truly didn’t understand what would cause my friends and specific family members to do this and after much debate I realized I was holding my opinions or “truths” back so that I didn’t possibly hurt their feelings or make them mad. Shortly after turning 28, I said my first “truth” to my mother, who all my life I was afraid my peace to. I did and not by my choosing, I haven’t spoken to her since. After that day, I made the conscience choice to be honest with people regarding things I might have been holding back or hurt me. Shortly before turning 29, due to my “truths” my 2 supposed best friends stopped being friends with me because they couldn’t handle the “truth” which I always held back so as not to hurt them. My other good friends has warned me that my 2 best friends weren’t good friends to me and where I thought being truthful would set me free, it sorta did and didn’t. Ironically enough, a few days after I heard a song which truly hit the nail on the head…Paramore – Careful.(Look it up and listen to the lyrics). Shortly after I got the following tattoo’d on my inner arm…”The truth never set me free. So, I did it myself”. So to finish, the truth really doesn’t set you free…it helps to get you close but it is YOU who needs to set yourself free as well to feel as if you truly are “free”. By that I mean, you have to be ok with knowing that people aren’t going to like your opinions or your responses or your actions but if you know you are being true to yourself then that is what should matter the most. I did and I’m so much happier, confident, and excited about my life. I just turned 30 a month ago and I’m glad I was able to start the next stage in my life in a much better mental space. Recently I heard a quote from an actress who gets a lot of flack for who she is and for a mistake she made last year which reaffirms my point of setting yourself free…”You don’t need to give reasons for the things you do- you just have to do what you want. And sometimes the thing that seems messed up to everyone else is what’s right for you. You have to do it and not be ashamed of it.” Kristen Stewart

      • Adrienne McGuire

        Pretty awesome comment, Jess. Thanks for sharing that with us. I really enjoyed your perspective, and I think you’ve hit the nail on the head. The truth will help, but ultimately YOU are the one deciding to be free from whatever untruths you’ve been weighed down by.

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