"Dropping all the bullshit and being honest was a turning point."
Years ago, I attended a personal transformation seminar.
There were opportunities for the participants to share something personal with the group. Many times, we would hear something that felt like a well-rehearsed script. It sounded nice in some way, but fell a little flat.
And then, there were moments when someone would share something very authentic and vulnerable. We all knew it was the truth because it landed with a thud.
The atmosphere of the room would change. Even if that truth was difficult, it would bring hope into our hearts.
In Clayton's episode, he admitted that he hadn't told himself the truth of his condition. In avoiding the truth, he stayed stuck in the addiction.
He finally looked in the mirror and said, "You're a drunk who's been thrown out by his wife. You've lost your business. You've lost your family. You've lost everything and you're sick!"
From that acknowledgement of the truth, he was able to take the steps toward change.
The truth is a key that unlocks the door to transformation.
In his recovery, Clayton's mentor had him seek repair with those whom he had hurt through his addiction. Before he would approach each person, he would write out exactly what he wanted to say, allowing his mentor to review.
After he carefully wrote one such paragraph, his mentor crossed it out and wrote, "I lied." Again, that truth landed with a thud. All the extraneous words couldn't say it as powerfully as the blunt truth.
All of us avoid telling ourselves the truth at one point or another. Often it's too painful to see. Sometimes, we know it will require taking courageous action which we're afraid to take. What is it for you?
Denial may keep us safe, but it also keeps us stuck.