This is the third part of an exploration of the magnetic quality of openness. The first part looked at the power of permission to become more open. The second part explored the importance of vulnerability.
Another important aspect of openness that we can seek to practice is frankness or sincerity. Let’s now explore how sincerity can enchant our audiences.
To be sincere means to be “free from deceit or pretence; proceeding from genuine feelings or beliefs.”
So, sincerity requires honesty. It asks us to be real, raw, genuine, authentic or truthful. It asks us to say what we mean and mean what we say. It asks us to honestly express our meaning and feelings.
Sincere meaning and feeling is helped by clarity and conviction. We must fully understand and believe what we’re saying - our message. And we must also fully understand and believe why we’re saying it - our motivation. It’s also essential that we let our feelings flow freely.
Sincere meaning and feeling shines through when we are emotionally free. Sincere passion, enthusiasm and care can be catching. If we truly care about and believe what we’re saying or performing, others are much more likely to care or believe as well. Our sincerity of heart is a major gateway to empathy and connection.
Emotional expressivity varies hugely from culture to culture and person to person, so it’s important we practice discernment when determining what’s appropriate for the context. Most of us in the West tend to lean towards excessive emotional repression instead of overindulgence, but either end of these extremes can stifle or cripple connection. It may take a bit more effort to practice discernment alongside honesty, but even a dash of discretion can deepen people’s receptivity and willing to be drawn in, enchanted and inspired.
Clarify. Here’s a great exercise for clarifying meaning. First, find someone supportive to work with. Speak or perform something to them and have them ask ‘what?’ after any word, phrase or bit that they didn’t fully understand or grasp the meaning of. When your partner asks ‘what?’, repeat what you’ve said but aim for greater sense, clarity or meaning. This can be frustrating, but it’s effective.
Emphasise. Developing a sense for emphasis can help bring out more meaning. Take a sentence and play around with emphasising different words. It’s a great way to discover different shades of meaning.
Journal. To encourage greater emotional freedom, practice journaling - especially free-writing. Journaling can be very helpful for giving you a safe place to practice expressing yourself more honestly. In time, allow greater honesty to permeate your everyday experiences. Give yourself more freedom to honestly express your opinions, attitudes, thoughts and feelings.