Blog Character Chats

What is honesty?

What is honesty?

What does it mean to lie?

And what does it mean to tell the truth?

Every month here at True Balance Karate, we have our word of the month as part of our social emotional learning program called True Character.

This month’s word of the month is honesty.

Honesty means being straightforward and truthful in words and actions.

So what it is honesty?

This is something that we want to make sure we describe to our kids and parents.

There are always several ways to describe it.

The way we’re going to start talking about is by examining what is a lie.

Why do people lie?

There are a lot of reasons for why people lie. And a lot of different ways that people lie.

For example, sometimes people lie about their grades at school. Why do you think somebody would lie about the grades at school?

Do you think maybe because they’re a little embarrassed about the grade they got?

They’re afraid they’re going to get in trouble. They don’t want to own up to the work they’ve done.

Lying about mistakes

What about the case where a person makes a mistake?

Sometimes people lie about their mistakes and blame it on other people.

For example, let’s say someone spills apple juice onto the floor.

“Hey, what happened?”

“My sister did it.” (Even though she’s in the other room).

Sometimes we lie to cover ourselves, because we really don’t want to own up to what happened.

Being authentic

Sometimes people lie about who they really are.

However, it’s important for people to be authentic.

If you know your friend likes soccer but you don’t, you don’t have to lie and say that you like soccer to make them happy.

Sometimes people also lie in order to make themselves seem bigger, smarter, stronger, or faster.

They lie to try to tell people they’re someone that they’re not.

But it’s important in life to be authentic. It’s important in life to tell people who you are and to tell yourself who you really are.

What gets you in more trouble

One thing we always say to our students is, “What gets you in more trouble, spilling apple juice or lying about spilling apple juice?”

Lying does.

What gets you in more trouble, a B in math or lying and saying you got an A?

What gets you in more trouble, telling your friend you really don’t like playing soccer or lying and leading him on, only for them to find out later?

Everybody lies sometimes.

It’s part of being human.

Sometimes our first response is, “I didn’t do it.”

But we know when we engage our smart brains that telling the truth it really is a lot better and easier for everybody. And when we lie, we get in way more trouble.

Omission of truth

Now, can you lie without speaking any words at all?


It’s called an omission of truth.

Let’s say you ran your bike into your dad’s car and there’s a dent in it. You then put your bike away and don’t say anything.

Later, he sees the dent — or a scratch — and says, “Hey, who dented or scratched the car?”

You don’t say anything.

Well, if you don’t say anything, you technically didn’t lie because you never said anything.

But is that still telling the truth? No.

Let’s say you knocked something down and it broke. You swept it up real quick and you moved things around on the shelf in hopes that nobody will ever see it.

Is that telling the truth?

No. It can still be a lie.

An omission of truth is pretty much the same as lying about it.

So we want to make sure that we are always truthful with ourselves and we’re always truthful with others.

Honesty is that word of the month. It’s some thing that we want to be. It’s something we want to have and it’s something that we want others to see us to be.

Thanks. And we’ll see everybody out on the mat.
– Master Helsdon