Once, I received a call from a lady who was interested in relationship coaching. Her primary complaint was that her boyfriend was being secretive about how much money he made and what he did with his paychecks. During the course of the call, I mentioned that secrecy could be damaging to a relationship. All of a sudden, she starts yelling at him. She tells him I said he should not be hiding his money and should tell her how he is spending it. As I sat there listening, I could hear her boyfriend laughing at her the whole time she is hollering. For all I know, his mindset could have been that they were only dating and what he did with his earnings was his business. Now, one problem I saw with this couple, aside from his lack to take his girlfriend’s concerns seriously, was the fact that she wanted honesty but was not giving it herself.
This scenario happens in many relationships. You have one person who wants the other person to be an open book. Yet, they are not practicing a reasonable degree of openness themselves. Most often, people are secretive because they have been hurt in the past and are carrying around emotional baggage. In case you don’t realize it, baggage can have an adverse effect on relationships which causes a person to collect more baggage as they move from one relationship to another. A vicious cycle takes place and can be seen in each relationship this person becomes a part of unless he or she learns to trust and be trusted.
It can be hard to see the benefits of learning to trust when you have been hurt so many times. Some people wonder how to enter into and keep a trusting relationship. This takes work on both parties. That is why it’s imperative to calmly discuss issues as they arise and to make a joint effort to find fitting resolutions. The benefits of being in relationships filled with openness and honesty consist of more satisfaction and happiness and less worrying about nonsense. It’s easier for a relationship to continue moving forward when both people are behaving maturely and treating one another with respect.
Take some time to reflect on your relationships. What are you tolerating? Is dishonesty causing conflict? Are you giving honesty but not getting it in return? Maybe, you're the "guilty" party. Think about the importance of your relationships and your part in making them better. Start by using a little bit of honesty.
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