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In our day to day lives, we hear about friends and acquaintances who have experienced infidelity or perhaps have learned some painful secret about a loved one. Indeed, we can even have secrets we attempt to keep from ourselves, a fact to which our grossly outdated friend Sigmund may well attest were he still with us today.
I would argue from a clinical point of view as a counsellor that self honesty is the key to mental health in individuals as well as acting as a foundation for a a healthy human society. Being able to meet our eyes in the mirror as well as face the world with a clear conscience goes a long way towards being the best people we can be in this world.
Looking, if we dare, at politics and the entertainment industry we begin to pull back the proverbial curtain and realize that dishonesty, manipulation, and power games have been the modus operandi for as long back as we care to look. Thankfully, this dark web is rapidly unraveling.
It would seem as though the system, corrupt as it seems to be, has rewarded people who were able to play the subversive games and render themselves anything but honest for the sake of what they were pursuing.
Fortunately we are now moving into an era where secrets are not only discouraged but will become increasingly difficult to keep, especially for anyone even remotely in the public eye.
Privacy has essentially become an impossibility in the modern world, and so we must boldly face the reality of that fact and strive to become as honorable, trustworthy and honest as we expect others to be.
A painful secret kept by one individual is difficult enough for that person. When we deal with multiple people in different agencies mutually keeping secrets, the harm is multiplied exponentially. Indeed, secrecy is a key ingredient of the so-called swamp we so often hear about and experience.
The first step to truly draining the swamp is making honesty and transparency the goal, rather than simply trying to confirm preexisting biases. If there was a public figure I admired, do I find myself defending that person even in the face of credible evidence of wrongdoing?
To be a public figure is to open oneself up to the examination and scrutiny of others. The gap between what one presents and who one actually is seems to be getting closer together all the time. It is more and more difficult to hide behind any type of persona for the sake of deep, dark secret keeping and acquisition of power, prestige or other goals.
There has never been a time in our history when the general public has been so fed up with secrecy and corruption in our institutions. It is basically a constant static in the background of our lives whether we like it or not. As painful as these times can be, it is important to recognize the catharsis and healing that is taking place as secrets long kept bubble to the surface of our collective consciousness.
Think about how good it feels to tell a friend something you've been keeping to yourself for too long. Now imagine how good it would feel if there was no need to keep secrets, because the world had become a more trustworthy, open, and transparent place to live.
That is the direction we are heading, one step at a time. My counseling service has been about fostering a space where people are able to be honest about things that may have been too painful to face in the past.
It is much easier to trust a friend or a counselor with painfully kept secrets. I truly feel for those in the public eye that are experiencing rude awakenings as they and the whole world come face to face with the secrets that have kept us seek.
May 2018 bring about a healing transformation that fosters honesty, integrity, and transparency in all aspects of our lives. Feel free to contact me to set up a complimentary initial counseling session.