Sometimes when I use the word Truth I can see people
fidgeting or looking a little uncomfortable. They seem to
think that it means that they will be caught at something,
something difficult will happen, that whatever joy they have
carved out will somehow be damaged, that their business or
personal dealings will not survive the scrutiny of the
truth. Frankly to many it seems too virtuous or not viable
in today's complex society. But what if the Truth was the
first attribute that could not only support your success and
happiness but allow it to expand? It sounds more
interesting from that perspective.

A Solid Foundation

Truth really is the basic building block of all of our
relationships and all that we do in life. All of our
business endeavors are based on building positive and
mutually satisfying and lucrative relationships. If we do
not "tell" the truth, expect the truth from others and
value the truth then we are constantly unsettled, waiting
for the other shoe to drop. We have no real trust in our
relationships and in the reality we are creating.

It has been interesting lately for me to recognize what
encountering a lack of truth in two important relationships
has cost me both in my personal and professional life. I
have also seen this in the lives of clients and those around
me. I have experienced first hand the discouragement that
comes with being lied to and the ways in which it can
undermine one's sense of a benevolent and supportive life.
What is lost in many of our personal and professional
experiences that are not based on Truth? What is lost is a
solid foundation on which we can build and that can support
anything real or good happening. Unless truth is present
relationships and endeavors quickly become a house of cards
- one that can easily be destroyed. And surely we want all
of our efforts, all of our plans and visions to be supported
by a stable and strong foundation.

Personal Relationship

Of course there are different levels of the truth, if you
will. For instance, when we tell a "white lie" to shield
someone else's feelings or to protect ourselves we feel that
is allowable and even normal. But what happens if those
customary lapses in the truth begin to support the ease with
which we allow larger transgressions to go unnoticed? Let's
look for a moment at the simple ways in which many couples
begin to allow falsehoods to be a part of their
relationships. Small lies creep in. Perhaps we begin to
discover that we are hiding more from our spouse or partner
than we are revealing.

What gets damaged in that process? The wonderful first flush
of attraction and interest in each other diminishes. Our
relationships don't mature and grow. There is the beginning
of a wedge that only grows larger as the years go by. As
this goes on our trust in the relationship is eroded. We
lose a chance at real intimacy and the opportunity to be
accepted just as we are - something for which each of us
yearns. A small act of omission can lead to a huge
detrimental outcome. Everyone loses in that equation. When
this is repeated in various relationships our ability to
form healthy and alive relationships is deeply damaged.

Our Larger Interests

Let's jump to a larger playing field. What occurs when an
entire population is lied to consistently and egregiously?
We find ourselves in wars that we don't agree with. Quickly
we are in escalating conflicts and the need to support the
house of cards with more lies leads to deeper and more far
reaching damaging acts. In big business, for instance, with
the Enrons of the world, a whole population of workers loses
their life savings. We can only imagine the suffering and
despair caused by both of these scenarios. Once again, with
repeated lack of truth, we grow a population that becomes
disaffected, cynical and not willing to believe in anything,
a population that has no belief in leadership. A population
that loses the ability to create positive meaning from their
existence is a dangerous breeding ground for all that
plagues humanity.

Truth as Being!

Truth I think is really a verb. It requires our involvement:
telling the truth, standing for the truth, supporting the
truth etc. But beyond that it is an attribute, a quality of
our very selves that when transgressed leads to loss of
contact with our own inner navigation system, our own
sextant, our valuable internal intelligence. The degree to
which we are not told the truth is often the degree to which
we cannot recognize it. This separation from the sense of
truth in our own selves hobbles us from seeing our way
towards our best and therefore most successful selves. We
may not have been told the truth about our real abilities
and talents. Either these were not recognized and supported
or we were told things like we were slow, had no talent, or
our ability at an art would not get us anywhere in life. Our
ability to discover what is most natural and precious to us
may have been distorted and when this is continued we lose
the capacity to see it for ourselves.

So often when I work with clients, as a coach, I find that
they do not know what it is that they realty want in their
lives, what they are capable of or even what will satisfy
them. They feel somewhat unmoored and live life from day to
day more than slightly unsatisfied or trying to satisfy what
they imagine others want. They can't discern the next
important step. They have lost their ability to recognize
the truth for themselves. I believe this comes from a steady
and gradual build up of assaults to one's sense of truth and
harmony, repeated breaches of trust, and eventually a loss
of ability to trust.

Regaining Contact

How can we regain our contact to this precious and essential
attribute? I think you can begin to notice in small ways
when you chose not to tell the truth. Notice what is fearful
to you about it. What do you think you will lose? Is the
immediate perceived gain worth the damaging of your
relationships or your deeper more precious contact with your
spiritual self?

Without judgment notice what it feels like in your body when
you are separated from the truth. Notice what it feels like
when you realize you have been dealt with outside of the
truth. Not being able to trust in our relationships and life
is very scary for human beings.

Notice when you are still relying on old messages about
yourself that may not be the truth. If there has been a deep
breach of trust in your life rediscover what you love about
yourself and about life. See if you can start to mend the
disrupted connection to something deeper in you. You can
experiment with how to do that. For some, time to themselves
to read something inspiring is a support. For others time in
nature. Spend time with friends who you innately trust. The
road to the Truth is really the wonderful journey back to
your true self.

Ancient Wisdom

Native American culture has 4 steps that support this
necessary process:

Show up - be present to the situation
Pay attention- notice what is really going on
Tell the Truth - have to courage to stand for the truth
Be unattached to the outcome.

It may look like a tall order but when you do this the
result is regeneration and renewal.
Believe me the Truth will never fail you! It is your most
practical ally…

"Feel the truth of what you are and at the same moment act.
Risk yourself for what you know is right and true."

Fredrick Douglas, escaped slave from an Independence Day

Author's Bio: 

Connie Butler is a nationally-recognized professional coach and author, who has been building bridges between different approaches to human growth and development for nearly 20 years. As a coach, she is committed to becoming a dynamic collaborator with her clients, in the development of their lives, their businesses and, ultimately, in their satisfaction. Her work in building "The Thriving Series" has gained her Television interviews recently on Channel 4 TV in San Francisco and in South Florida on NBC 6 South Florida Today. She was recently interviewed on WLRN radio, a PBS station, during their Topical Currents segment on June 9th. Connie also provides individual and group coaching, telephone-based courses and email courses and can be reached at 305-534-1119 or Or