Radical Honesty is not to be confused with a moral obligation to tell the truth. It is a pragmatic, functional path to reduce human suffering through sharing in depth and detail what you feel, what you think, what you have done, and what you want. It is a way to liberate yourself from being at the mercy of your untrustworthy reactive mind and to get to a place where you forgive other people and yourself at the same time.
~ Core Principles of Radical Honesty ~
Admit that you, of yourself, are
powerless to overcome your addictions and that
your life has become unmanageable.
~Step One: Key Principle Truth – Honesty | From the LDS Addiction Recovery Program~
There is great power in sincere honesty. The first step goes beyond mere awareness. It delves deep into our soul regarding the nature and power substance use (and other addictions) have over our lives. We ultimately surrender ourselves over to the nature of suffering physically, spiritually, and mentally. It impacts our relationships. Has significant financial (and many times, legal consequences).
This sincere honesty comes about when we find ourselves humbled through our suffering. And it is not merely a moral obligation on our part to be honest. It is a radical and transformative sense of honesty. This means we are complete and total in our admission of suffering. Maybe it is the final straw. Maybe it is the reality of one’s health at stake. Perhaps, it is the ultimatum of a spouse/partner threatening to end the relationship. Or, an intervention where one’s children is taken from the home. Maybe one’s employment is on the verge of being dissolved due to lack of attendance and engagement. Whatever the reason – a person gets to the end of their rope and come to a realization that their denial, delaying, and detouring no longer works.
Two aspects to our willingness
The first aspect of our willingness begins when we admit to ourselves how powerless we have become in making day-to-day decisions that do not involve drug seeking behavior. This leads to admitting that because of our diseased mindset, we are not able to adequately manage our lives in a manner that is healthy and productive.
Secondly, it does require our willingness to establish abstinence and all attachments to those places, things, and people associated with our active substance use.
A recognition of what you lose by indulging in your addiction can help you find the desire to stop. If you can find even the smallest desire, you will have room to begin step 1LDS Family Services: Addiction Recovery Program – A Guide to Addiction and Healing