Posts Tagged With: honesty

To Thine Own Self Be True

To Thine Own Self


Shakespeare may have penned the phrase, but it’s a truth that’s existed before he wrote Hamlet, and one that has taken me a long time to comprehend.  I haven’t yet mastered it, but I’m working on it.

I’m finding the only way finding and being true to myself is possible …is by being completely honest with myself.  I am more than capable of lying to myself. I was a master at it.  If I were to bet or guess, I would say that a majority of us lie to ourselves quite often, rarely identifying and accepting the truth, because truth hurts.  Truth is hard to take sometimes. Truth is hard to face.  But, as the Good Book says, Truth will set you free. It really will.  It won’t make your problems magically disappear, but it will set you free so that you can begin the journey of living an honest life.

How can we live a true and honest life if we won’t face the truths in our lives? We want and demand truth from others, but how hypocritical of us if we don’t FIRST find, accept, and acknowledge truth within ourselves?  We are living in such an enabled society, where we even lie to ourselves because the truth is harsh and a hard pill to swallow.  It’s not OUR fault we are fat, lazy, and unhealthy and out of shape.  It’s society’s fault for making it too hard to eat healthy, by making poor meal choices more affordable and convenient.  It’s the Fast Food and marketing industries’ fault for my lack of self-control and discipline.  It is my cultural and socio-economical circumstances’ fault that I can’t afford personal trainers, gym memberships, and beautiful parks and recreation centers to work out. It’s our genetics’ fault that I have to work twice as hard as my skinny counterpart.  It’s time’s fault I have poor time management because I put other things in a higher priority  – like watching tv, sitting in restaurants, playing video games, chatting online or scrolling through social media outlets.   I have kids and don’t have the time and energy and money and opportunity.

We all have excuses.  We all cling to them when we want to justify our behavior, and then we moan and complain when we have to face the consequences of those decisions.  That’s the truth of the matter.

We all have the same 24 hours a day.  We all have obstacles in the path of what we need or desire in our lives. It may seem unfair when we try to compare ourselves to others and their opportunities.  Most often we tell the biggest lie to ourselves – “if I had the same opportunity as them …then I would.”  LIAR.  You don’t do it now – you won’t do then – you won’t do it even if you had EVERY advantage because you are NOT true to yourself FIRST.

When we truly have a passion for something, we make it a priority.  When we make something a priority, we have to take a truthful evaluation of where we were, where we are, and where we want to be – and THEN make some REALISTIC, honest, truthful goals – and then do them.  DO THEM.  One day at a time. One step at a time. One victory at a time.  One choice after the next, after then next, after the next – and NEVER GIVE UP. Don’t focus on the big goal, put all your focus on just making it to the next goal.  Be faithful in the little things …and you will be the master of many things.  But be unfaithful in the little things, you will also be unfaithful in the big things, and master nothing.

Success isn’t that you’ve gained something.  True success is when something has cost you – something you had to sacrifice a piece of yourself to obtain – and being true to yourself along the journey.  THAT’s the true success of anything.

Life sucks sometimes.  I mean it really, painfully, soul-crushing, can’t breathe, pushes you to the edge sucks sometimes.  I’ve had my share – and I know there’s more to come later.  But the best things I’ve ever accomplished in this life is learning to love myself, learning to see myself for who I really am, and then learning to be proud of the woman I am.  It isn’t my MBA, or my writing awards, or my publications, or my public praise, or anything I’ve accomplished that makes me proud of myself.  No, that confidence and pride comes from knowing what it took to get there – knowing the truths I’ve had to face – and being true to ME.

You want to get in shape – face your truth and stop making excuses.

You want a better job – face your truth and stop making excuses.

You want a better relationship – face your truth and stop making excuses.

You want to be happy – face your truth and stop making excuses.

You want to succeed – face your truth and stop making excuses.


To thine own self be true!


Till next time,

~T.L. Gray

Categories: author T.L. Gray, Blog Post, blogging, Faith, family, Health & Fitness, Hope, Hurt, Inspirational, Instructional, Life, Musing., Philosophy, relationship, Relationships, respect, Spiritual, T.L. Gray, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Where To From Here?

Where To From Here


Have you ever been in one of those transitional states where the past is almost behind you, but you’ve not quite stepped squarely into your future?  I hate that place of transition – but it seems that’s where life is lived – in a moment of transition.

I’ve been here for a while now.  I’m not complaining.  I’m moving. I’m breathing. I’m feeling both anguish and hope, but the key is that I’m feeling.  I’m awake. I’m aware.  I’m not just existing from moment to moment, counting down the days to the weekend, to reach the weekend and have it pass in a haze.

A very close Sergeant  friend of mine seems to live in the day.  I admire that.  I’ve been working hard trying to apply that to my life, to focus only on the here and now and what I can do to make my life better, happier, and more full in the day, in the moment.  The moments I’ve been able to do this have resulted in some very awesome adventures.   But this way of thinking goes against my very nature.  I’m a planner… I like to make lists and count all the costs of time, energy, heart and money before I start anything.  This is how I’ve been taught.  Responsibility, excellence, and accountability were drilled into me so fully that I already had everything figured out before I made the ‘leap of faith’.  (Yes, there was a hint of sarcasm in the oxymoronic example.)

The true Leap of Faith I took was when deciding to live my own life – for me – landed me flat on my face. It had me questioning everything I ever thought or believed.  It forced me to look at myself honestly.  Who likes to do that?  The woman reflected back at me broke my heart.  I hated who she had become because she wasn’t herself.  She didn’t know who she was or what she wanted.  She’d spent too much of her life trying to please and take care of everyone else – her god, husband, children, pastors, church, family, job, career, fans, etc.  Only as each of those things were snatched out of her hands (and literally all of them did at one point) did she face the fact she couldn’t save or help anyone until she saved and helped herself.

So, that’s what I’ve been doing.  I’ve been loving me and taking care of myself in every way.  I’m establishing a relationship with myself.  I’m learning my likes, dislikes, fears, hopes, values, ideals, dreams, limits, pleasures, capabilities, weaknesses, sensibilities, desires, etc.  I’m dating myself, and I have to say I really like the woman I’m turning out to be.  I’m crazy, I’m passionate, I’m hungry to live, I’m adventurous, I’m imaginative, I’m sexy, I’m low maintenance but high class, I’m honest, and I’m brave.  I’m often afraid, but I face my fears – especially facing the truth.  I’m compassionate, optimistic – yet stoic and realistic.  As one friend recently told me – I’m a contradiction of contradictory contradiction.  I will stand against a tempest and beat my chest in defiance, yet curl into a ball and wish to close my eyes and drift from existence all in the same day. I love deeply, yet believe I’m unlovable.  I’m not afraid of confrontation.  I hurt honestly.  I’m not always right (oh, boy do I know that) but I’m always wrong – honestly. I can admit my mistakes. I don’t try to hide my failures, embarrassments, or fuck ups – but own them and try to learn from them.  I over think and question everything.  I’m a mess.  But I’m never boring and often quite funny.

So, where to from here?

Till next time,

~T.L. Gray

Categories: Blog Post, Health & Fitness, Inspirational, Musing, Philosophy, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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