One trait that will truly advance you in life, dear reader, is the ability to see things as they really are instead of how you may wish them to be or assume them to be.
Such objectivity requires maturity and even courage in many situations, and is harder to practice than it is to understand.
“One may know how to conquer without being able to do it.” – Sun Tzu
Facing the truth of a situation is the first step towards any kind of progress or change. And it is often difficult, even scary. It means shattering a bit of your own ego, and while it will benefit you in the long-run, the immediate effect can be intense pain. To admit to yourself something true that you don’t like hurts. It also means that you’re no longer giving yourself the option to tolerate it – admitting the truth to yourself often forces you into change, change that you may not feel ready for; to let go of the false illusion you’ve been holding on to will create a sense of loss that you must mentally, emotionally, psychologically, and materially deal with.
“The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their proper name.” – Confucius
For example, admitting to yourself that your relationship is rocky and has more downs than ups will create pain, especially if you have been pretending things are perfect and rationalizing it to yourself for a long time. What’s more, when you truly look at the situation for what it is, you will realize that you are losing something that you never fully had in reality, but only thought you did. It is actually a gain, but it won’t feel like it at the time.
As long as you pretend and lie to yourself, the more you rob yourself of the chance for real progress and greater happiness.
“The wise men of antiquity, when they wished to make the whole world peaceful and happy, first put their own States into proper order. Before putting their States into proper order, they regulated their own families. Before regulating their families, they regulated themselves. Before regulating themselves, they tried to be sincere in their thoughts. Before being sincere in their thoughts, they tried to see things exactly as they really were.” – Confucius
You must have the courage, dear reader, to face the truth and the confidence that you will be able to handle the consequences. If you can’t handle the truth, you won’t be able to handle anything.