My friend Sam Davidson is currently on a virtual book tour with the release of his new book, 50 Things Your Life Doesn’t Need (Good Things to Know). Sam describes himself as “a writer, entrepreneur, and dreamer who believes that the world needs more passionate people.” He hopes his new book will “help people find and live their passion.” He is the co-founder of Cool People Care and Proof Branding, and lives in Nashville with his wife and daughter. Sam is one of the most passionate and creative people I know. Check it out! Here is an excerpt:
One Thing Your Life Doesn’t Need: Dishonesty
My daughter can’t talk yet (in a language we can understand), but no doubt once she learns to use words, one of the most challenging parenting lessons will be teaching her what truth is, what lying is, and why you should always tell the truth, no matter who you’re talking to.
Of course the old adage reminds us, “If you always tell the truth, you’ll never have to remember what you said.” Exactly. Dishonestly builds upon itself until eventually we have no option but to unravel our entire whopper and come clean (this is in fact a universal truth that applies to everyone at all times everywhere, outside of Washington, D.C.). We could have saved time, energy, and frustration if we’d just told the truth.
Your life doesn’t need dishonesty. Rarely does it stop with one lie. Read any children’s book about the subject and you’ll see that trying to cover up the bad test score or broken lamp only amounts to more lies and confusion and Mom or Dad is never happy with the outcome. In essence, then, nothing has changed since childhood. What you didn’t need in your life then you don’t need in your life now. Stop lying in any form – to yourself or to others – and you you won’t have to keep track of what you’ve said and to whom you’ve said it. You’ll then spend less time worrying what it was you said and if you’ll be found out.
Truth, even as absolute as we’d like to make it, still has a gray area. Because truth can encompass facts and data as well as life lessons and wisdom, it’s a big tent under which many ambiguities can hide. What about telling the truth, but not the whole truth? Or what about those things that are true, but not factual (the lessons we learn from myths of childhood stories and fables, for example)? How do we know when we’re being completely honest since honesty itself can be defined so many different ways, made up of so many disparate parts? Not to mention the white lies that don’t hurt anyone and don’t seem to build upon themselves. Telling someone they don’t look fat in a certain dress or that someone will find Mister or Miss Right if they just keep trying causes much less harm than the brutal alternative of no-holds-barred honesty. Philosophers and ethicists have written volumes about this concept, but I think we can all benefit by remembering that we can always use less dishonestly in our lives and much more truth. Choose appropriately.
Best of all, when you commit to being honest and getting dishonesty out of your life, you’ll begin to be more honest with yourself. This is important to finding your passion. If you don’t love something or something doesn’t feel right, you needn’t lie to yourself that it does, you can simply admit it. You don’t want to find yourself down the road several miles when you should have never made that turn to begin with. You’ll know if a certain interest or passion really appeals to you. Admit to your self when it feels wrong – and when it feels right – and you’ll be sure to find that passion that is yours and worth pursuing wholeheartedly.