I was shocked when a friend told me something like this: “But I can’t tell the truth to everybody. You can’t just be honest with everyone.” I was even more shocked, when I realized that this friend was not alone with this conviction.
In my childhood I started getting really good at lying. Until this very day I am convinced that I am a genius when it comes to lying. However, I stopped telling lies. I do not mean that I stopped telling most lies, or some lies, or something like this. I stopped telling lies completely and started being absolutely honest. That does not sound special? With absolutely honest I mean absolutely honest. When I catch myself lying, which is rare these days, I immediately say so and tell the truth. Why do I do this? Does this not make me an easy target? Does this not make me weak? I do not believe so. Honesty became one of my biggest strengths.
In my childhood I did not like myself. To be more precise: I thought I was simply amazing. Unfortunately I did not have it too easy. I was a very nervous, hyperactive, and hyper-sensitive child. I asked millions of questions and demanded incredibly much attention and love. When anything, and I mean anything, upset me, I snapped and got physical. This aggression is still inside of me, but I use it for creative thinking today. One day I learned that my aggression made me bad. I felt that I was an evil person. This traumatic experience made me hate myself. I hated myself so much that I thought of myself as an alien. I could not possibly be human.
Like many others, I had interesting but hard teenage years. When I left the troublesome years of adolescence I had learned how to accept myself again. I learned that self acceptance was a key to a door that I still had to find. Still, I used lies on a daily or weekly basis. I am not talking about big lies, I am talking about lies in general. When we start being absolutely honest, we will discover so many lies that we tell. Small lies, bigger lies, funny lies, lies that make a good story, etcetera. I played all these small games that people play in these years. Have you ever wondered why you can’t just go to a party and tell a person that he/she looks incredibly beautiful? I have done this, and most times I wondered why people thought I was flirting or “hitting on them.” I was just being honest. Of course, maybe it is creepy if one just does things like this, but isn’t it sad that we live in a world were this is considered weird and creepy?
I realized why that is: People tell lies, people act, people try to be someone else. Many people do this not all. Dating games, small mind games with strangers, presenting yourself as someone you are not. All these things are, somehow, accepted. I think to a certain extent that is okay. However, for me this was not the solution.
I moved away from my home country. In a new environment of many internationals I finally found the door. The key of self acceptance opened the door to the ability to love yourself. I moved to Groningen and learned how to love myself. In Groningen I started thinking about all the truths that I tell myself. I started to question things. My close friends quickly realized how often I contradicted myself. Immediately after discovering small lies or things that I do not know (but claimed to know) I would tell what I actually know. Often this meant that I just confessed that I do not know anything. In Groningen I started being absolutely honest to myself and others. Of course, I have the freedom to decide not to share information with people. I am not an open book. I advised many friends to try this method, but most of them said “they need lies.” I understand that certain people need to act and play roles, but I could not understand how these people still rejected the idea of being honest to them self. When I started being absolutely honest to myself, I saw how many things in my head were small lies or not true. I also found out that most of the people I know seem to be scared to be honest to them self. What would they discover? What could it be that is more scarier than the absolute you? Maybe nothing is scarier than the absolute you. Can we ever actually find out who we are? I believe that we should never stop asking ourself who we are. When one thinks he/ she has found himself/herself, this person should ask again. Finding out who we are in an ever expanding question with an ever expanding answer. Just like space and the Omniverse. What do we actually know? The only thing that I know is: I think I exist. Everything else is based on logical and rational (and sometimes irrational) thinking. Isn’t the best way to find solutions and answers to be honest with yourself? If we actually know nothing, at least we can be honest with ourself.
I tried this for months now, and I am not planning to stop. It works. I see myself as the character that I play. All of my acts and decisions have consequences. Everything has a consequence for the one big game that we all play, but often forget: Staying alive. We should be grateful that many of us live in societies where we do not have to think about survival. Sometimes it might help about it. When you do not know an answer to a question think about the bigger picture. Think about yourself. What would be the best thing to do right now? What would be the best thing for the bigger picture; staying alive. What gives me the best bonus for the game of life? Since the day I started being absolutely honest to myself I have almost no troubles anymore with making decisions. I simply ask myself “what is the right thing to do for me now?” If I cannot find the answer I seek information. People have information. There are, of course, other sources for information, and I do not always find what I want. At least I am honest to myself. When I am alone with myself, in a room without music or company, I can exist in peace with myself. My thoughts do not tell me lies anymore. I am honest. I would like to invite everybody to try this for a while. See how it works out. If you think you are honest to yourself, ask again. If you come to the conclusion that you really are 100 % honest with yourself and others, you should be proud.
Honesty is one key, but there are unlimited others. Lying is a key, acting is a key, playing games is a key. I came to the conclusion that absolute honesty at least does not make you use those keys against yourself. Who does not like peace? …
Now ask yourself: If you are the person that lives. If you are your body, your mind, your character. If you are the human that you are. If you are the only choice you have. If you are stuck in your body until you reach the big mystery, why hate yourself? You are you. The only logical solution I could come up with was: You have to love yourself. Maybe absolute honesty is so scary because some people are scared to start loving them self.