One of my favorite lines because it’s true. You can’t outsmart people that’ve been around the block a few times so why waste your time? Just be upfront about what you’re trying to do or if it isn’t working out, then say so.
The best lesson I ever learned was when I was fired from a job back in college. I tried to lie my way out of being responsible for a big mess up, in which my boss had to cover me. He said he would think about my fate, and called me a couple hours later.
He explained that not being truthful is what did me in. I could’ve accept responsibility, respected him and told him the truth, and my job would’ve been safe. Hearing him call me out made me feel two inches tall and I turtled into a shell, knowing I couldn’t BS a bigger BS’er than me and he was right.
“Listen kid, if you ever want to get anywhere in life, just get to the point and don’t insult anyone’s intelligence with the run around. You’ll get more respect for telling the truth than leading people on.”
I would sugar coat things to people because I was afraid of hurting their feelings when my real answer was no, but didn’t know how to tell them. So I’d lie and say I’d think about it, or keep pushing them off until they finally gave up in contacting me.
It’s ok to be afraid of confrontation, which is why a lot of people will shy away from being truthful about things, but in the end, you’re only hurting your character. It comes from lacking the confidence to be truthful to people, it’s like I didn’t want people to dislike me, so I tried to please them by compromising who I am.
I still have to work on it because hurting people isn’t a good feeling. When I start beating around the bush on something, I have to stop and ask myself how mad would I get if I knew they were bs’ing me? So I’ll shoot them straight in the most caring way I can, explaining my reasoning and giving it a soft landing.
Being mindful of it taught me how to figure out people’s BS. Whether it’s social or business, you can see people’s uneasiness when it comes to telling the truth on how they feel. Like my old boss, I encourage people to give it to me straight and not insult my intelligence nor waste my time by beating around the bush.
I was recently talking to someone and knew they had a bit of confrontation issues so when a text arrived, after a night out, saying, “Thanks for being you!”, it was easy for me to read the tea leaves.
I laughed and knew it was the last conversation that we’ll ever have. It was a good run, but no one is worth your time if they’re never going to give you the honesty that you deserve.