The Art of Transparency

“When I say that self-disclosure is a means by which one achieves personality health, I mean it is not until I am my real self and I act my real self that my real self is in the position to grow”

-Sidney Jourard, Transparent Self

Sidney Jourard, a psychologist before his time, researched the concept of transparency in the form of self-disclosure. His argument was that, a major cause for people suffering mental and physical illnesses was because they were not being their real self, their authentic self is what we call it today.

But what is transparency? The condition of being transparent, which in the context of an individual, is the ability to be perceived or known.

Do people know the real you? A better question is, do you know the real you?

In our collective world culture, being transparent has been given a bad rap. We have been taught to put on a poker face, to not let the right hand know what the left hand is doing, to keep the outside world out of our inside family business…you know the old saying “what happens in the house stays in the house”, or “don’t tell our business”. These viewpoints are not only for business and families it has been adopted by the individual and how they relate to the world and others.

Being transparent has been identified as being weird, narcissistic, unruly and in some circles ungodly. Having an identity that is not considered “normal” within the constructs of that person’s career field, family, culture, religion is at most times scrutinized, and ostracized. Yet we all have a longing to stand out. Ironic right?

There is a social trend about being your authentic self, yet it’s restricted within the boundaries of what society labels as normal…so then we go around with a counterfeit or façade of a made-up version of our authentic self. Being multiple different personalities for people in different settings is fringing upon Multiple Personality Disorder, NOS. This can’t be right.

So how do we break this cycle of lunacy?

I believe self-disclosure is the answer. How so? You might ask.

Well to start real people hurt, real people cry, real people grieve, real people get mad. Real people have messy hair days, wake up with bags under their eyes and sometimes don’t want to get out of bed, but stay in their pajamas and read a book all day. Self-disclosure is being authentic to all of you. It’s not just showing your good side on an Instagram photo it’s about being true and real about yourself.

When we tend to share only the good and best about ourselves with no self-disclosure, we create unauthentic and shallow connections with people, leaving us feeling detached and unconnected. Why? Because transparency in the form of self-disclosure can help us relate to others in a humanistic sort of way. The “me too” factor or the “I’m not alone” comfort. It just creates intimacy in a relationship pushing past the thick surface of the blah, blah!

We have all been there when a person is talking superficially, and we check out!!! No connection, no truth, no real self, no transparency. Overall transparency connects people…the true art of building relationships!

So, you owe it to your spirit, mind and body to be you…all of you…the real you. I’ll leave you with Mandy Hale’s advice in how to be transparent. Her quote reads;

“Just be yourself. Let people see the real, imperfect, flawed, quirky, weird, beautiful, magical person that you are.”

This blogs homework assignment: Share with a friend or family member something you have never shared before about yourself!

Thank you for visiting my blog, it truly makes me happy…see you next time!

Jacquelyn Rivers

Featured Posts
Recent Posts