Do you ever say, "let me be honest with you?"


Do you ever say, “let me be honest with you.”
Let me be honest with you and say, “I hate this phrase!”

I can tell you these words are commonly spoken in conversations as a way of establishing trust and sincerity, but for me, they do the exact opposite. I mean, seriously, why do we feel the need to say it?

Every time I hear this, my mind questions, “have they been lying to me up to now?”

I realize some people may want to emphasize that they are about to share something important, truthful, or personal.

It's almost like a confession.

Maybe they think it’s a way to show they are not holding back or sugarcoating anything. As if they are giving you the unfiltered truth.

Maybe they feel it will differentiate themselves from others who might not be as honest or transparent.

They use the phrase trying to position themselves as trustworthy, reliable, and authentic. Trying to imply that they are not like those “politicians, salespeople, or friends who lie, deceive, or manipulate.”

To me, the use of "let me be honest with you" has far to many drawbacks and unintended consequences.

Again, it can imply that they have not been honest yet and they are now finally revealing their true selves.

It suggests that they are not always honest or that they have to remind themselves to be honest.

When I hear those words it creates a sense of suspicion or doubt in my mind. I think to myself, "Why do you have to tell me you’re being
honest? Are you usually not?"

What I think happens most of the time though, is people don’t really know they say it. Almost like they use it as a cliché or a filler. It's a way of starting a sentence without actually saying anything meaningful or relevant. It's like saying "um" or "well" or "you know" to buy time or avoid awkward silence. (Join Toastmasters and learn how to stop that.)

If you must use those words, please use it sparingly, appropriately, and sincerely.

If we want to establish trust and authenticity, we should focus on our actions, not just our words.
Always strive to be honest, transparent, and empathetic, not just when you say "let me be honest with you," but all the time.

Go make a difference in someone’s life today!

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Photo credit Eleonora Francesca Grotto on Unsplash