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a blog by Chris Barrow

Lethal Authenticity

A week of watching the television news would indicate that telling the truth is out of fashion.

The BIG lies are those told by corporations and people in power, motivated by their addiction to “success”.

Organisations and brands that we trusted.

Individuals who, earlier on, earned our admiration.

The small lies are those we tell ourselves and others every day.

“Are you OK?”

“Yes – I’m fine.”

“Is the food to your liking?”

“Yes – thanks, it’s lovely.”

“Am I doing the right thing here?”

“Yes – keep on just like that.”

We do it because the pain of telling the truth seems greater than the pain of the small lie.

Society educates us to avoid making a fuss.

It’s a short-term fix.

It’s the good conversation whose absence festers into the BIG problem.

What you could have said was:

“No – I’m not OK – and here is why.”

“No – the food isn’t what I expected”

“No – you aren’t doing it right – and here is what right looks like.”

Those on the receiving end of this feedback may well react in ways that are indifferent, uncomfortable or downright hostile.

They identify themselves in this way as the wrong people to have in your life.

Lethal authenticity can be delivered without insensitivity, blame or aggression.

It will never win you an election, get you promoted or make you everybody’s party invite.

It will deliver clarity and integrity, one day at a time.

Eventually it will earn respect.

The respect that those on our TV screens have squandered.

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