This is the fifth lesson in my series, Writing Memoirs, a free email course from Writing Bliss. You can find my first assignment, Living Authentically, here. My second assignment, Living with Hope, is here. My third assignment, Living Patiently, can be found here. The fourth lesson, Am I Tolerant of Others?, is here.
This assignment is about sincerity. According to the dictionary, sincerity means ‘honesty of mind : freedom from hypocrisy’. When reading this assignment, I felt that the word, sincerity, wasn’t really a strong enough word for what I thought should be learned here. I found other words in the Thesaurus that I thought were more fitting. Therefore, I made the title of this post Am I Genuine? Am I Honest?.
* Think about the different “spheres” in your life — your job, school, friends, family. Which contain the most
sincerity? Which are most in need of sincerity?
With me, as I’m sure it is with some others, my family contains the most sincerity, genuineness, honesty. If I have my hair styled in such a way that isn’t flattering to my face, I know for certain that anyone in my family will tell me so.
I believe that people at where I work would be the most likely not to tell me the truth. Using the same example, I doubt very strongly that anyone at work would tell me to go get my hair restyled. In fact, they would probably lie saying that they like the new look.
* Do you value sincerity? Can you think of a situation where
sincerity paid off? Was it your sincerity, or someone else’s?
What good has come out of it?
I do prefer people to be honest. As much as I may not like what is said or what the outcome may be, at least I know it’s real, authentic. I don’t have to worry about a person falling short of my expectations of him or her this way.
Way long ago, when I was a teenager, I met a girl through her boyfriend. I knew what type of person the boy was, and I had a feeling that the girl would soon be hurt by him. I told my own boyfriend about how I felt, unknowing that he would share the information I gave with the boy because they were friends. Of course, when this happened, the girl found out about what I had said. She calmly walked up to me and asked me to take a walk with her. During that walk, she expressed her displeasure and asked me not to make assumptions about things I didn’t know enough about. Because of her honesty that she displayed with me, I took her words to heart and apologized. Soon we were best friends, with our relationship lasting until after high school. I still think of her with a smile on my face.
* Has insincerity come into a previously honest relationship? Do you need to have a difficult but truthful conversation
Yes, there is someone who I haven’t been honest with. It isn’t that I’ve said anything to her though. It’s a case of me not saying something to her. The woman is younger than I am. Because our relationship is already strained a bit, I’m certain that anything that I would say with total honesty would either fall on deaf ears or the situation would get ugly and she wouldn’t think I was telling her the truth. What she needs to know are things she’s probably going to have to learn the hard way, by trial and error — a lot of errors in fact.
I think all who are writing memoirs should take this assignment. Although I am one of those people who have a terrible time telling lies, this lesson reacquainted me with the easy possibility of telling a ‘white lie’ or ‘fib’ while writing in this genre.