How to be honest: A guide to build trust, be truthful and show honesty

How to be honest: A guide to build trust, be truthful and show honesty

Last updated on July 1st, 2021 at 10:27 pm

Honesty is the best policy. They say! How far it is true? If honesty really helps us to lead a happy and peaceful life, then how to be honest? How to be honest with yourself? How to be honest in a relationship? How to be honest at work? How to be honest in life all the time?

Let’s explore all the benefits and consequences of being honest along with what qualities in a person makes him honest. 

Read till the end if you wish to build trust in people and learn to be truthful and show honesty in life. Gather philosophical insights on life to be a good human in every aspect of life.

Why is it important to be honest?

Anyone who has the aim to lead a peaceful life with himself by being real to himself, then for him, it is important to be honest. And such a level of honesty can be achieved only through truthfulness. When a person becomes peaceful with oneself, automatically that energy reflects on the world.

However, there is no hard rule that everyone has to possess or possesses honesty. The world is full of dishonest people even if they claim that they are absolutely honest to their core. 

That said, it’s a matter of one’s own self-reflection, self-awareness and self-image i.e. one has to realize who he is and who he is not. 

Any man of morals, ethics and values strive to be honest. Honesty is the virtue of great souls. Not everyone possesses it completely. Only a pure and beautiful mind can have the power to carry the truth in himself and has the courage to face its consequences when it is uttered or applied. 

Which is the reason, in general the majority of people change their words and acts as per their favour, only in the aim to be benefitted by the situation rather than supporting what is objectively right or true.

What makes a person honest?

In short, any person who is genuinely true to oneself and resonates the same intensity of positive vibrations with others, can be considered as an honest person. A perfect balance of one’s emotional and rational judgement that applies to the reality of life makes a person truly honest.

What are the qualities of an honest person?

As earlier mentioned the single most attribute of an honest person is being true to oneself. However, there are other qualities that co-exist with truth and makes a person honest as a whole.

Let’s briefly understand those qualities with their definitions.

Qualities of honest person:

  • Integrity: Integrity is the quality of possessing strong moral beliefs, ethical principles and values. A person with integrity is always be consistent in his qualities of actions and align them accurately with his words of truth. 
  • Truthfulness: Truthfulness is the fact of being real and make statements that are true in nature.
  • Sincerity: Sincerity is the quality or virtue of being genuine to one’s own thoughts, feelings, desires and beliefs. A person with sincerity acts accordance with his virtues that shows honesty in his message. 
  • Straightforwardness: Straightforwardness is the quality of being direct in a practical sense. Which may be sometimes acted without concerning emotions or feelings but purely acts upon pure logic. 
  • Trustworthy: Trustworthy is the quality of being reliable. A man with trustworthy is consistent with his behaviour in every event and responsible for what he leads. 
  • Fairness: Being fair is the quality of showing equal treatment to anyone irrespective of one’s status. A person with fairness possesses a good judgement in all aspects of life.
  • Loyal: Loyalty is the quality of being loyal. A loyal person shows faithfulness to people whom he trusts completely.
  • Altruism: Being altruistic is the quality of being selfless. A person with altruism  possesses good intentions and cares for other human beings or animals selflessly irrespective any connection or attachment with them.
  • Bravery: Bravery is the quality of representing righteousness. A brave man always stands up for what is right or morally good even if it seems risky.

How to be honest?


How to be honest with yourself?

To be honest is to be a good human. Therefore, if you wish to live a good life then become a good human first. Later, everything else will follow, including honesty. 

How to be honest in a relationship?

A true relationship is effortless and oozes comfort with pure connection. The lovable partners possess a healthy attachment style even after having a vast difference between each other. They make one another better in their lows and highs. 

The secret behind such a perfect match is, their mutual understanding and the ability to lead the relationship on one common goal.  Love is the reason that has a well-built trust and honesty in a relationship.

Importance of honesty in a relationship

A serious and committed relationship doesn’t require any work on honesty. They simply be and genuinely possess authenticity in every walk of their life. However, life can be difficult and shows its worse side. Which results in the change of people including their goals. If one has the vision to continue a healthy relationship Then honesty is important and essential to keep the roots of the relationships strong.

How to be honest about your feelings with someone or with your partner?

The best way to be honest about your feelings with your partner or with someone whom you admire, is to be yourself. A clear communication is the key to better understanding. Expressing your feelings, values and beliefs with the most natural way can help you to build trust and honesty between each other.

Signs of dishonesty in a relationship

Some characteristics of toxic behaviours and signs show a person dishonest in life at many levels. A few lists of signs of dishonesty in a relationship are:

  • Lies: They become good at lying, with practice they become professional liars. You won’t even see any signs and blindly trust their articulate words and expressions.
  • Offensive: They have very unhealthy mindset, they get offended for each time even though they are wrong.
  • Disinterested: Though there many causes make a person lose interest in you. However, a loyal person would never do that. If a person loses interest or get bored with you then it is an absolute sign of dishonesty and cheap character.
  • Cheating: There is no other act that is terrible than cheating in a relationship. Often, it is unforgivable. It’s definitely the sign of dishonesty and lack of integrity.
  • Manipulates: They mislead the information by persuading you and manipulates you by being nice to get what they want. They make you blindly believe them.
  • Over controlling: If your partner dominates you in every thing, controls you and decides what you should do and should not, then these signs are purely toxic and dishonesty.
  • Doubt: A person who has self-issues also has problems with everyone and everything else. They have lack of self-awareness that creates doubt in themselves as well as in others.
  • Abusive: When anything gets done against their plan, instead of responding they use their power to abuse you physically or psychologically.
  • Two-faced: They change their words, acts and behaviours only to support themselves, without caring for others. 

Dealing with dishonesty in a relationship

You cannot change or forcefully ask someone to change who has inherently different personality than you. However, if some of your values align with them, then try your best to show your honesty, integrity and true side. If they get inspired by your authenticity and realizes that you truly deserve a true love then they will change themselves for you.

Otherwise, if they do not change their toxic behaviour towards you. Just understand that not every person you meet or feel connected supposed to be in your life forever. Just avoid those kinds of people and move on to the next stage of your life.

How to show honesty at home?

Showing honesty at home is entirely different from being honest at another place. Home is where you have to be who you are irrespective of the environment. If any one of the family possess toxic behaviours you cannot abandon them. Instead, try to persuade them and understand them inside out. 

When they feel accepted and understood then they open up with their intentions and actions. Such a way you can build trust and honesty at home and with each one of the family members.

Related: How to express love: 30 ways to show love in 5 love languages.

How to be honest at work?

Workplace is a professional social setting. You cannot be the way you are as you are with your family members or partner. In order to develop and show honesty at work, you need to understand the work culture and ethics of the organization. Then act according to the rules and regulations with a friendly behaviour by finishing the tasks before deadlines. 

This will help you to gain a lot of respect and promotions. If you just work as per their expectations. 

Importance of honesty in the workplace

Honesty and integrity are the major traits, what any organization looks in a person they are going to hire apart from intelligence and liveliness. If you want to expect a good treatment from your higher officials and hike in your salary and promotions then obviously honesty is very important in the workplace.

How to be honest with your friends?

Friends are the very few people in our lives who know the worst and best sides of our personalities. If you don’t act righteously by being honest, then you are missing and losing the only essence of friendship. You need not to try hard to be honest with your friends. Real friends will accept and understand if you being there with them in their darkest and brightest times.

Why is honesty important in friendship?

If you are not honest with your friends, either they are not your friends or you are not a friend to them at all.  Needless to say, A good friendship and relationship involuntarily works on the qualities of honesty, integrity, openness and empathy. If you want to build trust and long term relationship, then honesty is truly important in friendship.

How to be honest in life all the time?

Randomly, any person cannot become honest suddenly from nowhere. Each one of us born with different genes, traits and personalities. They cannot be changed unless one puts extreme amount of efforts in himself to alter his mindset entirely acts and tragic or major events force them 

Ways to be honest

List of tips and ways to be honest in life, relationships, at work and in every situation:

  • Do what you say and prove it with your results.
  • Be responsible for your words, actions, for yourself and for the people around you.
  • No matter how hard it is, always speak the truth.
  • Be committed to your goals and show sincerity in your work.
  • Be an inspiration for others to accomplish their goals.
  • Develop empathy, care for people and help genuinely who are in need of you.
  • Do not seek attention, do not try to impress others, 
  • Be yourself as authentically and truthfully as you can. So, that you attract others who have similar values. 
  • Be straightforward in a humble way such that people understand what you are trying to convey to help them.
  • Always strive to improve yourself without comparing yourself to others. Just focus only on your growth and ambitions.

Benefits of honesty

There are more benefits by being honest than the disadvantages. Here are the list of benefits of honesty you should know to get benefited by their applications:

  • Honesty empowers an individual. 
  • Honesty makes you physically attractive, 
  • Your honesty makes others emotionally to trust you.  
  • Your honesty make you look spiritually brave and courageous.
  • Honesty shows that you care people. So they fall in love with you for being humane
  • Honesty creates a great bond and increases your circle of great people who have similar values in life.
  • Honesty eliminates trauma and other nuisance drama in your life
  • Honesty develops a great sense of self-awareness, satisfaction and fulfillment.
  • You know when you are honest and when you are not. Being honest all the time make you realize that you feel inner peace and accomplishment.
  • Being honest is to be a good human. To be a good human is all that everyone strives for.
  • Your honesty makes others to feel accepted and understood. That’s a great sign of maturity and good human.
  • Honesty creates a great life.
  • Honest eliminates mental health issues like depression, anxiety and fear of uncertainty.

Consequences of being honest

The issue is that, if you are really too honest that may turn out to be bad for you. Along with benefits there are also consequences of being honest. Here are the list of disadvantages that you need to face for being honest:

  • People consider your honesty as a show-off.
  • If you are too honest, people take advantages of your weaknesses.
  • If you are too honest, your close relationships step back to share any confidential information or secrets.
  • There are times your too honest opinion may be perceived as silly and make fun of you.
  • You need to realize that people always require your advice and honesty. That may defend you even if you have a good intention to help them.
  • Your too honesty and straightforwardness sometimes hurts others very deeply. you need to know when to be quiet and when to help.
  • People really feel to think twice or thrice in order to spend time with you or be around you.
  • Your perfectionism and righteousness make others feel inferior. They feel that you are dominating and misleading even you are true with your actions. 

How to be truthful?

If you want the difficult path, my simple hack to become truthful is – know what you want and act on it with an intense focus without receiving anyone’s help. When you try to solve everything on your own, you will face doubters, critics, disbelievers; and face setbacks, obstacles and challenges.

In the process you will slowly evolve as an individual begin to be humble. As everything you do turns you down, you lose hope, belief, you least expect from anything or anyone except your own commitment and will suffer enough. 

Yet, do not give up. keep going through the hell. You will become so practical, become closer to reality as you experience more suffering in the righteous way. 

After all the trials you have been gone through, there comes a stage either you choose to be silent or speak only what is real. Then every word you utter forms into a definite act of truth that every one easily resonates and realizes its essence.

If you want a simple path to become truthful, my hack is – create good intentions in your mind. Harm no one with your words or acts. Choose to be honest with yourself and speak what is right and prepare yourself for the consequences, if anyone misunderstands your message. Whatever the consequence might be stand up for your truth and keep moving forward.

Signs of deceitful person

The reality is we never know what the truth is. However, their body language, tone of voice and reveal some signs that can clue to recognize if someone is trustworthy or not.

  • Their words and actions do not align with the truth.
  • They try to manipulate to get whatever they want from you. (Not every time) But, in your gut you will come to know when someone is lying or not. Pay attention to your intuition, to gain clarity.
  • There is an inconsistency in their behaviour and change their words often to make them feel right.
  • Behind your back, they spread fault information about you.
  • They have a toxic and unhealthy mindset.
  • They often torture you and make drama out of each little wrong thing you do.
  • They always open for conflicts and fights.
  • They never share what really they are up to. (Hide things from you)
  • They do not trust you and often question your every act.
  • They have serious doubt issues and self-belief issues.

Want to know more about how to be honest? then learn what is a good life

Tips on when you should not be too honest about your opinions.

1. When you are around toxic people, save your honesty with yourself.

2. Be aware to share your vulnerability and personal life incidents that may affect your relationships.

3. Avoid sharing your most intimidating stories of your past if it’s not appropriate.

4. When judging someone’s appearance, approving someone’s request and breaking up with someone. Share what they might feel better to move on rather hurting them with the harsh truth. Some things are beyond one’s control, no one can do anything about it. So, be empathetic instead of acting rational nerd.

5. Whenever you are not in the mood to share any information, follow your inutuion and keep your secrets to yourself. It’s always not necessary to be blunt and completely honest.

Final thoughts:

One must know who he is and who he is not in order to realize what to say and what to do; where to say and where to be quiet. All these skills requires an extreme level of self-consciousness.

That being said, it’s crucial to remember as the old saying goes – “Honesty is the best policy” always and forever. However, one must not only know how to be honest but when to be honest in life. 

Just be aware, in order to save a relationship sometimes a white lie doesn’t harm anyone.

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