The Power Of Transparency
By Alexandra Plane and Donna Gianniotis
Transparency alludes to something being clear that enables us to see right through such as a clear window. We all know what it is like when the windscreen of the car is dirty and it becomes difficult to see outside. We may still see the road and the cars around us but there is a muddiness in the way that stops us getting a full picture.
Over the last few years we have been exploring the impact in our lives of making the conscious choice to be transparent – in our friendships, with our partners and families, with work colleagues and with strangers.
Committing to being transparent meant that we were choosing to be more open, allowing people to see us in our vulnerability – warts and all – when we are not feeling so great, in addition to also allowing others to see us in our amazingness and glory, ie. not holding back when we are “on”.
A simple example of being transparent is when someone asks us “how are you? Do we reply with the usual and mechanical “I am good” or “I am not too bad, thank you”. Or do we actually create the space to feel how we are and express from that place, connecting with our body and sharing what is there to be shared with that person in the moment ?
Are we choosing to be open and willing to let others know how we really are without the pretence of making it all ok when it isn’t? Or vice versa, are we choosing to hold back our reflection when we are feeling joyful and amazing, calibrating to others to not disturb them with the idea (perhaps not consciously) that this will make them feel better if they are not so great?
To be transparent requires a level of honesty as to express who and how we really are, married with a willingness to let others in – to let them see us in full.
So, what has been the result of our experiment to embrace transparency? Well, it really has been extraordinary.
What we have discovered is that the more transparent we are – just simply being ourselves, the more it allows others that we come into contact with to be themselves too. The walls that so often divide people are able to dissolve as we let people see us and they too then feel safe to be seen. A level of openness and intimacy can be felt, guards are dropped and we feel a true connection, which ultimately is what we are all craving for.
So if transparency is so powerful, why do we not choose it?
Could it be that we are afraid that if we allow ourselves to express our vulnerability we are going to get hurt or rejected? Could it also be that we are not comfortable shining bright?
When we choose to be something that we are not in order to be liked, in order to be loved, we lack transparency. However, when we choose to be something that we are not, it is like placing a dirty windscreen between us and others and we don’t ever truly get to see each other.
The remedy ? CHOOSE TO BE YOU AND ONLY YOU. Let go of ideals or beliefs that you need to be anything other than what you already are… enjoy being vulnerable, enjoy being amazing and feel the healing, beauty and magic of letting others in and your relationships deepen. Your body will certainly thank you.