Just Tell The Truth

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awesomejakeman.blogspot.com

I love to sing. I love to dance. I love to write. Consequently, I’ve joined many groups that cater to all those passionate about music and the arts. It’s always been a fun experience for me.

Once, I was watching some performances by one of the clubs I decided to become a part of. The performances done were no-strings-attached shows – if you want to get up on the stage, you can, and it isn’t a competition, so you can just have fun! A particular girl stepped up to the stage and sang one of my favourite songs – completely off-key! It was no big deal, though. None of us were pros anyway. We were just there to have a good time.

When she got off the podium, I watched her rush to her friend’s side, fretting about her singing and asking whether she did alright. To my horror, her friend replied with a smile, “Don’t worry! You did great!”

Over the years, I’ve discovered that instances like that happen frequently – in fact, on a daily basis! Everyone is praising their friend’s singing, dancing, painting… and it’s all a lie. Some people would quote Bambi, “If you can’t say something nice… Don’t say nothing at all.”

But you see, that’s the point! Thumper didn’t say “If you can’t say something nice, tell a lie instead”. He said not to say anything! Of course, if you barely know a person, really, you shouldn’t say anything at all. But what if it’s your friend, asking you for your opinion? How can you not answer? Well, being a friend, you have to be honest with them and tell them what you really think, in a gentle way. Because in the end, if you tell them they did good when they didn’t, you’re just making them believe that they can do something when they really can’t. And if they get mad at you for not praising them, they obviously don’t care what you think, and are just fishing for approval and praises.

Putting it simply… Just tell the truth.

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3 responses »

  1. “… tell them what you really think, in a gentle way.” I heartily agree. In the case of the singer’s friend, she/he could have said, “I could tell you were very nervous, but as you get more comfortable singing in front of an audience, that should get better.”

    I think it can be more important to praise a young person’s effort, than to critique their performance, and sometimes those close to us know that what we need in the moment is to know that they support our effort completely. Later on, when we are not so vulnerable, we may be able to hear the truth about our imperfections without feeling crushed.

    Your post hit home with me, because I wrote a post last week about hearing the truth (I specifically asked for it about a story I wrote) and the conflicting emotions I had about the result. Not everyone hears the truth in the same way.

    Anyway, good luck with your artistic endeavors! I bookmarked your blog so I can visit again!

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