The practice of honesty

Is honesty the key to happiness?
Are you honest with others?
…and WITH YOU?

The path to inner peace and the freedom of youth

Above all, it’s important to be honest with yourself. If you’re not honest with yourself – you can still win lots of races and world championships, you can still be successful in whatever you do – but there’s nothing like being aware that you’re being honest with others and with yourself.

Sebastian Vettel’s words hold a profound truth: in the rush for success and recognition (or indeed in our daily lives) , we often forget that the most important relationship we have is with ourselves.

Honesty is not only a moral duty, but also a self-awareness tool that helps us understand our own desires, fears and goals. Isn’t it often a big task to love ourselves and not see ourselves as our own employees – in a dictatorial system, of course?

Most of the time we expect too much of ourselves: work more, be more resilient, be more patient, get through this, don’t eat so much you get a big butt, call this, write that, FOMO… oh how long this list can be. We are not always kind to ourselves. If only we were as empathetic to ourselves as we are to others, oh my 😊

Why is this important?

Because when we are aware of our own desires, fears and goals (so we don’t have the thought bubbling somewhere in our subconscious and coming up in our dreams at night – but we honestly understand it, say it, represent it), we are able to make more conscious choicesthat are in line with our inner values and needs. (if I know that I like chocolate ice cream, but I buy vanilla ice cream and go home with my mouth full – who do I thank for that?)

This awareness will help us avoid situations where we act according to the expectations of others, leading to frustration and dissatisfaction in the long run. Understanding our desires allows us to set goals that truly motivate us and give meaning to our everyday lives. But it’s also true for everything else, from choosing a mate to choosing friends, from buying a house to making business decisions. (let’s face it, we are intelligent beings, we need to make sense of each day and our existence in general).

Recognising and managing our fears is essential for our personal growth, as they often prevent us from reaching our full potential. Knowing our goals gives direction and structure to our lives, helping us to focus our energy and resources on what really matters (US).

And I don’t really want to go into this from the usual business perspective, but rather from a human perspective, when it would be nice to be content, generally happy and cheerful. But how can you be happy if you are not well? When you don’t even know what you want? (this is even more of a cardinal problem for women, because we tend to put others before ourselves).

Watch out!

Lack of honesty can manifest itself not only in psychological but also in physical symptoms, such as psychosomatic illnesses (such as stomach ulcers, high blood pressure, or certain types of headaches), which are often linked to internal conflicts and unresolved emotions. The stress of not being honest with ourselves can also contribute to the development of chronic illnesses such as autoimmune diseases or depression.

You don’t even have to go far, stop talking about the people you don’t know, the ones you see at the tram stop, on the bus or in the shop. Think about those around you – family and friends. Do you know really unhappy people who always put others before themselves? You bet.

But how do we know when we are lying to ourselves?

Listen to the inner voice that often tries to warn us when something is wrong. Let’s step back and be honest with ourselves. Let’s ask ourselves:

How do we relate to our family, our work, our friends?

What do we really want from life?

Practicing honesty is not an easy task, but in the long run it is liberating and helps us to live a healthier, more balanced life. We must be brave. It is worth.

Remember a time when, as teenagers, we felt the world was our playground. When we had fun and enjoyed life, when we went to school or to work hungover (obviously not in an executive position), when we lived in the moment, we were spontaneous, we didn’t just laugh, we stormed, we danced, we raved, we gave ourselves what we really needed – or at least what we thought we needed – but then it was good. Of course, I’m not saying that we should kick the house side several times a week as adults or be hippies again – not that we can stand it any more… but why do most people feel they have to die under the weights? Are we hardwired/educated to work until we drop dead and then on the weekends we’re happy when Netflix surprises us? Why have we lost our spontaneity over the years?

You might say that as teenagers we didn’t know where we were facing and were mostly just experimenting, but if you look around (and look back): for example, what kind of break-ups did you see then and now? How long did the average person wait at that age to get out of, say, a toxic relationship, and how long are they waiting now? (if it ever quits). In the past, when you were young you would say “well you can go fuck yourself, don’t look stupid” and now you’re like “oh my god, there’s the loan, who knows if I’ll get a woman and anyway my other friends have so much poo, it’s not that bad”.

And we’re not talking about the couple having a fight because one of them put his socks in the wrong place… 🙂

What is negative, right?

Yet I would like to shed some light on the beauty of all this. Let us not be afraid! Of course, as an adult you have a lot more responsibility and you have to think before you make decisions, but if you love yourself a little more you might be happier. More satisfied, more fulfilled.

Sure, of course, what we did when we were 20-25 years old wouldn’t be so functional anymore, but do you remember that liberated feeling? Can you recall? If the feeling is there, why not evoke it and make it happen in an adult-compatible version?

I will soon be 33 and no, I don’t have midlife panic. I just see people withering away out of duty and it makes me very sad. We dare to open up less and less to each other. If we dare not tell others the truth, what about ourselves? Because the relationship we have with ourselves is eternal, so it’s even harder to say what we like and don’t like. That’s where the stakes are really high. Sooner or later you have to look in the mirror.

TWell, if we need a crutch: in the exercise of honesty, let us not forget the freedom that our youth has given us. Let us allow ourselves to rediscover the part of us that is not afraid to take risks, that is not “so worried” about tomorrow, and that can give ourselves what we need – or feel we need.

Like a bag and have the money to buy it? Buy it! Afraid you’ll regret it? Max you throw on Vinted. Come on! Same with anything else… Wouldn’t it be nice to have a beautiful bouquet of flowers on the table, but you don’t have a partner? Buy yourself a big, big bouquet of roses! You deserve it! Indulge yourself.

For me, when I didn’t have a relationship (well, I didn’t have one when I was young – although I didn’t really need one), I would go away for a wellness weekend alone. And not because I didn’t have a partner, but because I wanted to be with the person I loved the most and who needed the most support at the time – I took myself and whatever I wanted, whatever I liked, I gave myself a nice treat. And I was never lonely for a moment. Because I wasn’t alone – I was right with myself. Sometimes the best company is ourselves.

This kind of self-care and self-love is not selfishness, but a building block of self-confidence and self-esteem. When we learn to be happy in our own company, we discover that happiness does not come from outside, but from within.

A good relationship with ourselves is the most reliable relationship we can ever have.

We don’t have to seek the approval of others, we don’t have to meet the expectations of others. We just need to be who we are and give ourselves the love, care and attention we deserve. Think about how much we want every day, what we expect from others. A kind word, an affirming gesture, a small thoughtfulness. But why expect others to do this when we can give it to ourselves? When we are good with ourselves, every day can be Valentine’s Day, a birthday or even Christmas. You don’t need a special occasion to feel good in your skin, to treat yourself to a little extra attention or a little luxury.

Practicing self-love not only improves our mental health, but can bring positive changes in all areas of life.

When we’re confident and comfortable in our own skin, we radiate it. We can be more effective at work, more open and honest in our relationships. Self-love is not just about feeling good about yourself, it’s also about being the best version of yourself.

Needless to say, I met my husband when I was feeling my best, when I realised that this is who I am, these are my flaws, these are my strengths, this is who I am all round – I should, I don’t 😊 So you don’t surprise yourself or your partner – because you show your honest face from the very beginning. So everyone knows what to expect.

Honesty is not only a moral choice, but also a process of self-discovery that allows us to find the balance between duty and freedom, stability and spontaneity, seriousness and playfulness.

It is also the key to our peace with ourselves. Let us have the courage to face reality and not be afraid to share our true selves with the world.

With the inner peace and harmony gained through honesty, we can surpass all other successes. Let us love ourselves enough to dare to be honest and to shape our lives to truly fulfil our heart’s desire.

Honesty is not always the easy path, but it is always the most rewarding. Let us allow ourselves to remember the free spirit we once were, and let that memory inspire us to live honestly, not only with others, but with ourselves.

Let this honesty guide us in our daily lives, so that our choices and actions are guided by our inner truth and values.

Let us not be afraid to face the shadows of our past and let fears or doubts cloud our faith in the future. The path opened up by honesty gives us the opportunity to purify ourselves, to free ourselves from unnecessary burdens and to move forward with a whole heart and soul.

Being honest with ourselves also means accepting our mistakes and learning from them, without putting ourselves down.

This kind of internal dialogue gives us the opportunity to become more aware of our own motivations, desires and limitations, and thus to shape our lives more consciously.

Last but not least, honesty is not a lonely struggle. Let us share our experiences, learn from the courage and strength of others, and let the power of community support us on this journey. The relationships that are formed through honesty will be deeper and truer, whether it is friendship, love or even our relationships at work.

So, let us courageously step forward on the path of honesty and let our inner light guide us. Let this light be our hope, our courage and the love we offer to ourselves and to others.

Honesty is not only a moral choice, but also a means to enrich our lives. Let this tool shape and guide us towards a happier, more fulfilling life.

Western people have to learn and practice this, it doesn’t always come instinctively to us. But there is nothing wrong with that. That’s good! 😊

I’ll close with a wonderful tune that’s been circulating around me since morning:

“And though I may be wrong,
I can step before the Lord of song,
That there is nothing on my tongue but: Hallelujah.”

With love from Aletta