Honesty and transparency make you
vulnerable.  Be honest and transparent anyway.

Kent M. Keith (variation of his words)


We delude ourselves that we want to implant "honesty" in our children; what we really want is to imbue them with our particular kind of dishonesty, with our culture's dishonesty, our class's dishonesty, our cult's dishonesty.

Sidney Harris


Every act of dishonesty has at least two victims: the one we think of as the victim, and the perpetrator as well.  Each little dishonesty makes another little rotten spot somewhere in the perpetrator's psyche.

Lesley Conger


I would replace the quality of sincerity with honesty, since one can hold a conviction sincerely without examining it, while honesty would require that one subject one's convictions to frequent scrutiny.

Christopher Phillips


There is no well-defined boundary between honesty and dishonesty.  The frontiers of one blend with the outside limits of the other, and they who attempt to tread this dangerous ground may be sometimes in one domain and sometimes in the other.

O. Henry

Honesty is a person's most valuable asset.  His or her good name, good reputation, and good word depend on the individual's quality of honesty.  A business that operates under the principles of profound honesty is elevated within the community.  It is respected and treasured.  The absence of honesty is a liability to an individual or business.

James H. Merkel and Abdul Wahad Al-Falaij


Make yourself an honest person, and then you may
be sure there is one less rascal in the world.

Thomas Carlyle


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Honesty is the cornerstone of all success, without which
confidence and ability to perform shall cease to exist.

Mary Kay Ash

We must make the world honest before we can honestly say to
our children that honesty is the best policy.

George Bernard Shaw

"Honesty" without compassion and understanding is not honesty,
but subtle hostility.

Rose N. Franzblau


Integrity is telling myself the truth.
And honesty is telling the truth to other people.

Spencer Johnson

Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.

Thomas Jefferson

Slander cannot destroy an honest person--when the flood recedes the rock is there.

Chinese proverb

Our lives improve only when we take chances--and the first and most difficult risk we can take is to be honest with ourselves.

Walter Anderson

Honesty needs no disguise nor ornament; be plain.

Thomas Otway

The trite saying that honesty is the best policy has met with
the just criticism that honesty is not policy.  The real honest person
is honest from conviction of what is right, not from policy.

Robert E. Lee

There is an honesty which is but decided selfishness in disguise.  The
person who will not refrain from expressing his or her sentiments and
manifesting his or her feelings, however unfit the time, however
inappropriate the place, however painful this expression may be,
lays claim, forsooth, to our approbation as an honest person,
and sneers at those of finer sensibilities as hypocrites.

Arthur Helps



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It's discouraging to think how many people are shocked
by honesty and how few by deceit.

Noel Coward

Honest and courageous people have very little to say about either
their courage or their honesty.  The sun has no need to boast
of his brightness, nor the moon of her effulgence.

 Hosea Ballou



The first step toward greatness is to be honest, says the proverb;
but the proverb fails to state the case strong enough.  Honesty
is not only "the first step toward greatness,"--it is greatness itself.

Christian Nestell Bovee


Honest people are never touchy about the matter of being trusted.

Ayn Rand


The plain truth is that honesty is critical to the moral fiber of every individual.
Experts agree that people who are honest feel better about themselves.  They
are able to enjoy stronger friendships, are more successful in school and in other
pursuits and, in the long run, have deeper, happier marriages. It is from
honesty that so many other desirable traits spring forth.

Betsy Brown Braun


The line of honesty is so differently drawn by different
persons, that one would be led to think that there was
an honesty in the abstract.  Practical honesty, however,
in the strictest sense, will always be the object of
those who wish to settle a just account with themselves.

William Dalby



Let me tell you a secret, which ought not to be a secret, seeing it is
written in the Scriptures--be honest and your whole body will be full of
light; and this of every kind; you will actually see further and see clearer
than shrewd and cunning men, and you will be less liable to be duped
than they, provided that your honesty be combined with a determination
to protect honesty, and to discountenance every kind of brand.

Edward Irving


Several things help us let go and live, including honesty and openness.
I am totally honest in the way I live.  I canít control what someone else
does; I canít make him or her change.  All I can create is my own
behavior.  I can say that someone did something that made me feel
uncomfortable, but then I let it go.

Anne Wilson Schaef


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The meaning of honesty seems to have changed.  An element of grace once existed that helped separate honesty from permission to insult.
   Now honesty for some people means saying whatever is on their minds, regardless of whom it may hurt.
   These people preface their comments with, "I hope you won't get mad at me," "Please don't think I'm being critical," "Don't mind if I'm honest," "I'll be candid with you"--and then they insult you.
   Honesty requires more thought than an insult.  Most of us think faster than we can talk, so many ideas that flash in our minds never reach our tongues.  Thank goodness!
   People are able to act their best when they feel valued.  Honesty in the form of insults or criticism wears down confidence.
   If honesty means being insensitive, check your motivations.
   An honest insult may not be as honest as you think.

Jennifer James
Success Is the Quality of Your Journey


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the people behind the words - our current e-zine - articles and excerpts
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Three Cavaliers
David is driving west, hoping to start a new life that's free from the problems that he's been experiencing.  When a convenience-store clerk convinces him to give 70-year-old Hector a ride west, he can't imagine the lessons he'll learn about his own life.  Hector's stories of his past help David to learn that things may not be as bad as they seem to be.  This novel explores the dynamics of dealing with prejudice from two different perspectives, in two different eras.
$2.99 on Kindle.