Radical Honesty vs Telling the Truth: The Definition of Integrity

Most people think of themselves as honest simply because they don’t lie very often. Unfortunately, there is a BIG difference between BEING honest and USING honesty to get an outcome. If you truly want to live with integrity, you’ll need to know how to be honest rather than just using it as a strategy that feeds your neediness.

If your neediness is causing you to experience relationship problems even though you feel like you are telling the truth most of the time, you’ve probably fooled yourself into thinking that you’re an honest person when you’re really just a truthful person. This is better than being a liar, but it’s not the same as being powerfully honest.

What is morality? What does it mean to do the right thing? Is it ok to be dishonest? Can you have integrity without full honesty? These are ultimately philosophical questions that we each need to figure out for ourselves when deciding the kind of communication in relationships that we think is best.

Radical honesty is more than just telling the truth. If you want to learn how to make friends or how to be a better friends, then you’ll need more radical honesty in relationships and friendships, rather than playing it safe with intellectualised truth-telling or hiding behind vague facts and figures.

The Naked Truth: Using Shameless Honesty to Enhance Your Confidence, Connections and Integrity

Get Dan Munro’s latest book to learn how to build your integrity and truly be yourself without fear.

The 3X Confidence and Authenticity Masterclass Program [Udemy course]

A complete in-depth guide on how to build your confidence by being authentic and living with integrity, following Dan Munro’s secret 3X Confidence formula.

Overcome Your Fear of Rejection… Permanently [Udemy course]

Say goodbye to fear of rejection, approach anxiety, and missing out on opportunities. This quick but thorough course will destroy your limiting beliefs around rejection.

The Legendary Life: Build the Motivation and Confidence to Create an Authentic Lifestyle [book]

Dan’s first book covers a complete blueprint for designing your life in a way that matches your core values, showing you how to overcome fear, set and achieve powerful goals, and build your confidence without needing other people to like you.

Nothing to Lose: Using Curiosity to Destroy Hesitation, Procrastination and Limiting Beliefs [book]

A philosophical examination of the confident mindset, from a scientific and practical viewpoint. This book will help you decode confidence into a set of beliefs and behaviours that you can control.


Full transcript

One of the main reasons that people don’t believe that honesty is a huge problem in their life, is because they’re often telling the truth, which they think is the same as being honest. In this video, I’m going to show you that that’s not true. While being truthful is a lot better than lying. Being honest, living with integrity actually requires a lot more bravery from you than just telling something that’s true. What I’ve seen in brojo, some guys will start practicing being more honest, no, actually get them some of the outcomes they want. And then they slip from being honest into being truthful. And it’s actually a kind of dishonesty. So what it all comes down to is intention. Are you trying to live with integrity? is honesty the point? Or are you using honesty to try and get an outcome, because if you’re using honesty, it’s not the same as being honest. And essentially, it’s kind of the same as lying. How’s it the same as lying? Well, essentially, the person you’re talking to doesn’t know that what you’re saying while truthful, isn’t honest, that there’s a hidden strategy and motive, there’s hidden information going on behind the scenes that they’re not aware of, which means you’re committing the sin of omission, you’re lying by not disclosing the full truth. Now, this happens because we get attached to outcomes. There are all kinds of outcomes that we become very emotionally attached to an unwilling to lose, like being liked and getting approval, like making the sale or managing to convince somebody of something, winning the argument, building a good reputation being respected, on and on and on, there’s all these outcomes we’re trying to get, which are a different intention to just trying to live with integrity, just trying to be a man that you can be proud of. And the number one outcome that everybody’s mostly trying to achieve is a smooth emotional state. We don’t want flickers on the graph. We don’t want people to get upset or too excited. We don’t want to feel emotions much ourselves. So usually, what we’re trying to do is avoid Rocking the Boat emotionally. That’s the main outcome we want. We don’t want awkwardness. We don’t want anger. We don’t want confusion, we don’t want disappointment. And so we might be telling the truth, but we’re not revealing the truth that would actually upset people. So essentially, you can actually lie while telling the truth. And I’m going to give you some examples of that. The first is what I’d call intellectualized honesty, you see this a lot in professional debates, it’s where the person is speaking a lot of truth, but you’re not actually being shown how they really feel. They’re often hiding behind what I call academic truths, rationality, reason, logic, and a create a very secure mask behind which they can hide from you. So you think you’re getting the truth, but the real person is not being shown. A great example of this would be someone like Sam Harris, in a debate, he’s very reasoned and very rational and logical and everything you’re saying, you know, he’s not lying. You know, he’s telling the truth. And it’s sometimes you know, man, he’s really upset with that person of God, he’s so frustrated with them. And yet, he doesn’t say that, but he doesn’t show what he’s feeling. He’s always got that kind of wall of academia in front of them, to give them that professionalism. He’s not showing the human behind the wall. Another kind of truthful lie is facts and figures, the engineering conversation, I call it the kind of conversation you have with someone who’s really into cars. Everything they’re telling you is true for everything they’re telling you is accurate. It’s really facts and figures. But again, you’re not seeing how they feel or what their true opinions are. You’re not saying like anything that might be awkward. It’s a detached style of speaking, where you talk about something as a third party. You talk about things and stuff and other people without even mentioning anything really raw and real about yourself. Another classic one, which is my biggest pet peeve at the moment, pre scripted vulnerable stories. They’re stories of someone that sounds really vulnerable, and they sound like they’re bringing out all this raw truth about themselves. And yet, this has been scripted, practiced, we’re not even entirely sure it’s factually accurate. You see it a lot in the self help industry. You know, when I was younger, I was poor, my father used to beat me and bla bla bla bla bla, and since then I discovered the path to X, Y, and Z. And now I’m the man and there’s always that kind of rags to riches story. And it sounds vulnerable. I’m talking about abuse in the past and horrible experiences. And yet the person’s practice this so much that they’re no longer in touch with it, how they actually feel and what’s really vulnerable for them right now is still hidden. This vulnerable sounding story isn’t actually vulnerable because they don’t feel anything about it anymore. And you get this a lot in seduction as well. A man will learn how to practice stories that get an emotional response from woman. But he even if the story is effectual, he’s not really feeling it. This isn’t spontaneous, this is strategic. And the strategy is being hidden from the person which is a form of lying. One of the more common examples as keeping things safe and vague. You might say, for example, that you had a good weekend. Now, it’s true comparatively, that weekend was in the positive range. But there’s so much detail lacking from that, and all the nuances taken out of it. And a lot of people speak this way, they just give you the kind of headline, and it doesn’t leach on that there’s anything else going on behind the scenes. So this kind of honesty is keeping you safe by keeping it vague any sort of details or nuance that might create a ripple and the emotional sphere, or whatever you call it, the emotional environment, those are left out. And we’re just given the kind of positive highlights. In the final example, which is similar to the last one is the kind of thing you get from salespeople, the benefits, the features, the positive aspects of something. People can also do this in conversation where they’ll tell you about their holiday, and it’s just the highlight reel. It’s all the good things that happened, although tell you about their relationship, and it’s just nothing but good times. You see it on social media, the way people post is if they life is just an endless series of successes and pleasures, and they’re not showing the other shit that happens. Just like a salesperson won’t show you the parts of this product that aren’t so great around so valuable. So what’s the problem with this? A lot of people think, Hey, this is just how we survive socially. This is just part of the game, right? This is politics. This is just culture, this is how it’s done. Well, the problem is, essentially, you’re being fucking dishonest. Which means it comes with all the problems that dishonesty comes with. People can’t trust you, you don’t connect well with people, you shame yourself by hiding the truths, you build up things that you’re later going to have to back up and you’re going to have to remember, and you’re not really participating in the world with integrity, you’re just kind of playing a game and you’re not really alive. And that can lead to existential dread and loss of identity and self. And also, people can feel when you’re doing this, not everyone, but most people have a kind of intuition. And they know the difference between raw, vulnerable, truthful, real honesty, and something that isn’t a lie. But it’s not the deep, dark truth. I can feel it when someone tells me about what they got up to on their holiday. I know they’re not lying to me. But I also know, I’m just getting a facade of the true story. And in that moment, I feel disconnected from them. When someone’s being raw with me, I feel it. It feels different. It’s it’s simple and just genuine. It’s really hard to describe as soon as someone talks I fuck this is some real shit. Where somebody else could be telling a whole lot of truth. And you don’t have that feeling you like, yeah, they’re not lying, but something’s off. Of course, there’s one of the reasons that I’m going so hard out promoting my next book, the naked truth that you can check it out, preorder order it up there. And then we’ll go into a lot of details about how to be powerfully honest and raw, without creating all the negative outcomes that you’re so worried about. So what is the difference between being honest and just telling the truth? Well, ultimately, it’s about what truth you choose to tell. Honesty is about choosing what I call the obvious truth, which is the most important, most real, most vulnerable, most epic thing currently occurring to you inside yourself. And nothing else, no pre scripted, no going around the obvious truth to find a safer thing to talk about. But that elephant in the room that sometimes pops into your head, bringing that out. And in particular, it’s about when you get to that crossroads. And one way you choose protecting the outcome or getting the outcome. And the other way you choose integrity and being honest. And being honest, is about going in this direction at that point in time being willing to lose this outcome in order to maintain your integrity. That’s the difference between being honest and just telling the truth. Yeah, the thing you’re worried about might happen. There might be awkwardness, you might lose the connection briefly with somebody, you might hurt your reputation a little bit. People might not like you, you might not get the sale. Those things can end will sometimes happen nowhere near as often as you’re worried that they’re going to happen. But definitely sometimes the upside is the long term gains, higher self worth because you don’t to shame yourself by hiding the truth inside you. Increased respect, trust everything else in a relationship that comes from that feeling you get when someone’s being real with you all the time. Even people who don’t like you can end up respecting and trusting you, because they know they’re getting it straight from me, which builds a reputation of integrity, if you start to be known as the honest person, which means it becomes a lot easier for you to be honest, because people expected of you, they don’t expect you to put on some social performance like everybody else. And most importantly, just being able to look in the mirror and go, that’s a real motherfucker. I like that guy, that guy has integrity, that guy stands up for what’s right, even if it costs him. That’s so much more rewarding. In my humble opinion, then whatever outcome it is that you’re trying to get money to get laid approval, whatever it is, is nothing compared to being proud of yourself, and respectful of yourself as a human being. But look, it doesn’t always go that way. There are people who have died for their integrity, sometimes the bad guys win. So ultimately, you have a choice in front of you. Do you want to get the outcomes? Or do you want to prioritize your integrity? Because the painful truth is you can’t do both. And that those key moments when these are in conflict, you’re going to have to choose. So make that choice Now, which one is more important to the short term outcomes or the long term integrity? It’s not a hypothetical question. That’s up to you. You can go for the outcomes if you want. But let me ask you this, you’ve probably been doing that your whole life. How’s that working out for you? I’ll finish up with just one little practical tip. If you struggle with this kind of honesty, you can actually prime and prepare people to receive it. You can say, Look, I’m going to have to say something a little bit awkward here. Or like, look, what I’m about to say next is just really honest, but you might not like to hear it. Or do you mind if I give you some honest feedback, because something’s just come up for me. And you can let people kind of prepare themselves to receive it. Not only does that show respect and compassion for them, you’re not just gonna can hit them in the face with it. But also, it allows a conversation to begin because you’re going to go into what I call the awkward Valley, you bring up something that ruins the nice, comfortable emotional flow of the conversation, it feels like you go down. But this valley can come back up as long as you maintain the honesty and respect and talk through the mess one word at a time, one feeling at a time. And on the other side, then you go into an upward kind of trajectory, you go into connection and respect and relationship, which by the way, is so much better for getting all those outcomes you want anyway, but it’s just understand, prepare them like we’re about to go into a dip, things are about to get a bit dark. Let’s work through it together. And that gives you the best possible chance. It also allows you to identify Is this the kind of person that I should even be trying to do this with? Or are they just not a good fit for me and I need to move on with my life. Thank you so much for watching. Please subscribe and share this around. Don’t forget to check out my new book below somewhere. And I’ll see you guys next time. Cheers.

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