When I was a kid I would play hockey with my brother in the basement even though I was told not to. One time I shot a puck through the wall.
I was so scared of my step fathers reaction that I decided to fill the wall with newspaper, patch it and paint it so he wouldn’t notice.
A few days later he walked in the basement and noticed the paint job of a 10 year old.
He called me down stairs pointing at the wall.
But to my surprise he wasn’t upset. And he told me something that would stay with me forever.
He said that he was more upset that I was hiding the truth than the actual damage of the wall. He said that in the future he promised not to get mad at me if I was honest with him from the start. I always told the truth after that.
When you take away fear, there is no reason to lie. It’s only when you create a safe environment for people that you will get honesty in return.
Also published on Medium.