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10 Reasons Why Honesty Is the Best Policy (With Examples!)


All of us have found ourselves in instances where we’ve felt the urge to lie. Whether it’s a white lie to avoid hurting someone we care about or a fabricated truth to manipulate a situation to our favor, being dishonest can ultimately take us down a destructive path.

Being truthful with our words and actions is important especially if we want to create meaningful relationships and live a peaceful life. Being honest helps us live an authentic life that's both true to ourselves and others.

If you’re looking for more reasons why you should always choose to be honest, then keep reading!

What motivates us to be dishonest

What’s your earliest memory of saying or doing something dishonest? Perhaps you may remember something mischievous you’ve done in your childhood. According to psychologists, it’s natural for us to start lying at a very young age as early as two years old. (It’s okay, you can forgive yourself for lying about pinching your baby brother that one time!)

Thankfully, we do grow up and learn from our mistakes. In another study, it has been found that children develop aversion to lying as they age. When they do lie, it’s usually for selfish or envious reasons such as wanting to gain more or get ahead of their peers.

When we become adults, despite developing stronger moral values, we still have the tendency to lie based on various reasons. This study found that the top motivations for lying include:

  1. Being altruistic.
  2. Keeping secrets.
  3. Avoiding negative perceptions from others.

Whether you’re lying to protect yourself or other people, being dishonest can have consequences ranging from stress and loss of self-worth to facing punishments and being distrusted by others.

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Why we should choose to be honest

Being truthful to ourselves and to others have benefits that can ultimately lead us to living a more fulfilling life. If you ever find yourself in conflict, here are 10 reasons why you should always choose to be honest.

1. You’re likely to stay out of trouble

Being dishonest to other people, especially to those who are important to you and those who may have authority over you, can be a recipe for disaster. If you’ve been found to be lying to them, you’re likely to face negative consequences.

No matter how hard it may be, telling the truth is always the way to go. If you also face a consequence for it, then perhaps you do need to learn that lesson anyway.

2. You feel less guilt and shame

Let’s say you did get away with being dishonest. Word of warning: emotional consequences may also follow you! Guilt and shame can haunt you when you know you’ve done something dishonest such as cheating or deceiving someone.

When you always choose to do what is right, you feel less of these toxic emotions. So having a clear conscience is something we should always strive to achieve at the end of the day.

3. You make meaningful connections

When you’re interacting with other people, sincerity can go a long way. You’re likely to find yourself enjoying conversations more and even making new friends. 

When you embrace who you are and let other people see your truest self, you’ll surely draw meaningful connections. So, don’t be afraid to open up to others especially if your goal is to connect with them on a deeper level!

4. You cultivate respect

If you found out that someone you look up to has been lying about their admirable qualities, surely, you’ll be devastated and quickly lose respect for them. 

It’s important that we stay true to who we are, our achievements, and even our flaws. This shows that we have integrity. Always remember that gaining genuine respect from others is much more important than keeping up a false image that they will eventually see through.

5. You build trust

Staying truthful to your words and actions helps build trust with other people. When your honesty shows, the people around you will feel safe and tend to be more open to you.

Maintaining trust is crucial especially in our relationships. Once trust is broken, it may be hard for us to piece it back together again. So, it’s important to nurture it by avoiding dishonesty at all costs.

6. You have lasting relationships

Whether you’ve seen it in movies or experienced it yourself, we all know that breakups happen because the other person has been dishonest. Cheating, lying, and deceiving others are your one-way ticket to splitsville, for sure!

When you earn the respect and trust of people you care about, it’s likely that you will have lasting relationships with them. Being honest is also a love language and shows how much these relationships mean to us.

7. You become your most authentic self

Your honesty is an opportunity for other people to get to know who you really are. If you’re always truthful about your character, capabilities, and intentions, your authenticity will shine through.

It may not always be easy to bare your soul to others. But wouldn’t it feel so good to be exactly who you are and be valued for it?

8. You have peace of mind

A lot has been said about the consequences of dishonesty. Whether it’s being emotionally tortured by our deceitful acts or being anxious about the bad karma it may bring, being dishonest can cause a lot of stress in our lives.

When we know that we haven’t wronged or hurt anyone, we can surely gain peace of mind and sleep better at night.

9. You live a simpler life

Imagine that you’re caught up in a web of lies to the point that you’ve spun an alternate reality out of it. Now, you have to keep up with it and end up living two lives: the real one and the one that you made up.

Honesty breeds simplicity. So, don’t waste your energy by coming up with extravagant lies that you’d find yourself struggling to get out of.

10. You attract honest people

If you want to have decent, trustworthy, and genuine people in your life, then you have to cultivate these qualities in yourself first.

Your honesty will surely captivate kindred spirits. And as a result, you’ll be surrounded by people who give you the same respect and sincerity that you put out to the world. Your vibe attracts your tribe, so here’s to choosing authenticity!

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Wrapping up

Honesty will always be the best policy in situations where we’re in conflict with ourselves and others. At the end of the day, having a clear conscience will allow us to have better relationships, worry less, and be the person we’re always meant to be.

So, the next time you feel the urge to tell a white lie, remember all the reasons why you shouldn’t. Be brave, and embrace the truth. You’ll definitely make the world a better place by simply having a pure heart.

Madel

Madel Asuncion

Writer

Writer and advocate for young people's mental health. Firm believer of validating one’s feelings, prioritizing the inner-self, and finding happiness in a plate of chicken curry.

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