Throughout my life I find people often struggle with how to be honest with someone without sounding too negative.
For example, how often do you hear someone say something really hurtful, but then they quickly follow it up with, “I’m just being honest.” That’s a common excuse we say when we know we’ve just been unnecessarily cruel or mean to someone.
Honesty is important. I believe we need to learn to acknowledge both the “positive” and “negative” that exist in the world – but we have to learn to do that while also not feeding into the negativity itself.
Sometimes it is appropriate to express concern for someone – maybe they are adopting unhealthy habits, or they are making relationship mistakes, or they aren’t making a good decision in their career, or whatever.
A good friend needs to be honest, and that sometimes means touching on subjects that aren’t always very comfortable to talk about. At the same time, we need to do it in a healthy and respectful way.
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