Earlier this year, a client expressed excitement that Oprah, the woman who has everything, was going to admit that even she couldn’t lose weight and keep it off. I didn’t know what Oprah was going to say during her January show about her weight and living her best life. I only know what is true – right now - in my life, or in some cases my clients’ lives.

I can relate to a client struggling with weight loss. I eliminated over 68 pounds from my body over 35 years ago, and I still remember why I gained all that weight; what I had to do to see and accept the truth about why I gained it and kept it on; and how I was able to release the excess weight and still not regain it. I also remember all the emotions and fears attached to both having the weight, and the journey of letting it go.

Over the years one statement still rings in my head – “the truth shall set you free”.

When I was at my heaviest, I was lamenting with a friend who was also one of my greatest mentors, that no matter what I did, I couldn’t lose weight. Her question was simple: Is that the truth? Her question startled me at first, and I answered “yes” and reiterated that I was doing everything. We continued to chat about my unhappiness with my weight, and with every answer I gave her question remained the same – “is that the truth?”

As children we are told to always tell the truth, yet the most destructive lies are the ones we tell to ourselves. Lying to ourselves can become such a habit, we may believe those habits are the truth. I still ask this question of myself and with every client.

When I struggled with my weight, it was the truth that set me free. My excess weight was tied to my self esteem, which had been damaged when I was raped. When I saw that truth, I was able to see that my excess weight was not the only area in my life that I struggled with. When I worked to heal my self esteem, I was able to hear the truth more clearly each time I began to self sabotage with an old habit. Another client had learned that her weight was her way of controlling other people. When she listened for the deep truth, she learned why she used this behavior and how she could change this habit of needing to control others. These examples are not suggesting that every person should be a certain body size or weight. Some people can truthfully know that their body size is their perfect size, and not an effect of hiding from the truth.

One client struggled to increase her business. On the outside she talked about wanting to help people, when the truth was all about making money. At the same time she was hiding from her fear that she was measuring her self worth against her bank account. Another client couldn’t seem to get out of debt. The truth not only showed her why she was in debt, she discovered a deeper anger that she thought she hid well. By seeing and accepting the truth, she has not only reduced her debt, and effectively manages new expenses, her stress has become more manageable as well.

One client had been struggling with the success of her business for years. She is talented and intelligent and has the credentials and experience to support her chosen profession. The results in her life appeared as months where her client base increased as well as her income and then it would crash. It appears she followed the latest trend in advertising and marketing and saw some promising results. Then it appeared that the flow had run dry and she struggled to pay her financial obligations that month. Some days she would be excited and some days she was angry and fearful.

During my mother’s era it was common for women to get a job as something to do until they found a husband who would then take over the care of their lives, earning the income while the woman stayed home to raise a family. “Women’s Lib” was introduced in the 60’s, and now many people loudly condemn a woman who may want an “old fashioned” marriage. I saw an interview with Gloria Steinem recently where she stated that women’s lib is about a woman having equal rights so they can choose their own path, be it to stay at home and be a mother, or to work outside the home. Much has changed in our society where the family dynamics have expanded that either or both parents participate in raising the children and earning the income.

In working with this client she admitted the truth that her deepest desire was to have a loving husband, and not have her own independent business. She wanted to be a wife and team player with him in his business, as she had been with her first husband who unfortunately and passed away from cancer after a few years of marriage. She was afraid to mention this goal in any of her goal support groups, because instead of receiving support she always received negative comments, including telling her that she was selling out, she didn’t need a man to be whole and similar responses. She continued to work on her business and disguise her unhappiness.

When she started looking at the truth in her life, she was able to see where she set her business aside every time she started dating a man she interested in. Instead of promoting her business, she was focused on the potential personal relationship. Her business ups and downs correlated to her personal relationships whether she was in one or not.

When she started to see the truth, she didn’t need to tell anyone else. She didn’t need to justify it to anyone else. She only needed to know it for herself. She was able to see that there are men who want a wife who is also a team partner in business; there are men who want a stay at home wife; there are men who don’t want a wife at all. There are men who want families of all sizes and dynamics. Once she told herself the truth, she could see several possibilities.

Now she doesn’t tell anyone else what her deepest desire is. Instead she now sees her business as a valuable reflection of her integrity. She focuses on keeping her business clean and debt free so that she will attract a man with similar financial integrity. She focuses on giving her clients the best service, so that if or when she chooses to let go of her independent business she can do so with knowing she always gave her best. She continues to nourish only business contacts that she would be proud to introduce to anyone. And her business is more consistently successful than ever.

Recently there is a renewed buzz about the Law of Attraction, and with as many people saying it works there are just as many people complaining that it doesn’t.

I met Louise Hay, one of the founders of the self-help movement, over 30 years ago. When I saw her on television recently, she had the same answer today as she did 30 years ago. Someone said to her that the law of attraction doesn’t work. This person said that they had been using the affirmations that Louse suggested and the affirmations didn’t work; and that they were using the affirmations and the vision boards all the time. Louise simply suggested that if they were to journal each minute of their thoughts and actions, the truth that would be revealed to them, would be that they were probably doing affirmations and looking at their vision board more than they had in the past, however they were also still telling themselves all the reasons why they couldn’t, shouldn’t and wouldn’t as many times as they had in the past. Plus they were probably increasing their habitual counter productive thoughts, statements and efforts because they were now also repeating them after saying their affirmations and vision board. She suggested that by accepting this truth, they could then see how many times they were actually negating any positive thoughts and efforts with all the self defeating thoughts and efforts. From that truth they would be more aware and could make more conscious choices in the moment.

Whichever side of the equation a person chooses to accept – keeping the struggle or making the commitment to re-train their thoughts and actions, being truthful with themselves is the beginning of a powerful shift in their life.

Once you see the truth, you don’t need to make any changes if you don’t truthfully desire a change in your results. You can see the truth and still choose to attempt to ignore it or hide from it. The difference is that you will now be more aware of when you are not truthful with yourself.

There is a similarity in most people’s body response when they say they are doing everything to get the positive result and the positive result couldn’t be reached. Whether it’s changing financial status, weight, career, relationship or any other desired goal.

Anytime we say we are doing everything and not getting the result, the guilt meter in our body will alarm.

It remembers the extra portions taken, and the other food items eaten that are not supporting the declaration of wanting to lose weight.

It remembers every time a business plan is not followed and when the satisfaction of the moment is chosen instead of the commitment to the long term or life goal.

It remembers every time a lie is said to support actions that move us away from the stated desired goal.

It remembers what the deep underlying truth is that starts the cycle of denial.

The alarm is the trigger of Guilt. The more we lie to ourselves, the more guilt chains are formed. The chains of guilt are a powerful jailer.

We are more transparent that we want to believe. Many times the people we are sharing our excuses with can see our dishonesty more than we can. Similar to the emperors’ new clothes, where he falsely believed that he was wearing beautiful clothes, when in truth, he was naked. I have seen that when something said to us motivates us to knee-jerk react by behaving overly defensive or angry, that may be one alarm and the key to uncovering the truth. Although we usually don’t appreciate when a well-meaning friend tell us our dishonesty, this is where a good professional coach or therapist can be valuable.

Many people attempt to silence these alarms with food, alcohol, drugs, overwork, sex and even excessive exercise. When you allow yourself to see the truth, these alarms will be loud at first. Then you will hear them less. Not because you are ignoring them, instead it’s because they are no longer there.

Instead of building restricting chains of guilt in your energy you are building trust in yourself. The truth sets you free.

You can ask yourself this question, “is that the truth?’ about anything in your life. This question can assist you to find the truth about who you think you are, what you believe you are worth, and what is in your way. By living from truth, you will be able to see honesty what you want in life, regardless of what is popular. You will be able to see more clearly which obstacles you created or attracted by habit or fear. You will find your solutions. The truth will set you free from premature cognitive commitments; those previous opinions and habits you adopted without any thought or introspection.

It’s not about anyone else’s truth. It’s not about truth to someone else; it’s about truth to yourself.

Each time you are are truthful with yourself, your energy shifts, your language shifts, your thinking shifts and your actions change. When thought and action change, results change.

The truth can set you free.


Author's Bio: 

Results Coach; Self Worth Advocate; Bounce-back Expert; Author; Speaker.

As a Results Coach, Sumner Davenport works in harmony with her clients to assist them in discovering what is true for themselves, growing their businesses and surpassing their personal goals. Her greatest passion is seeing people live the life of their dreams while assisting others to do the same.

She encourages people to question their premature cognitive commitments and discover their own truth for their lives.

As a published author, Sumner works with aspiring authors, brings authors together in joint projects and assists published authors to find greater marketing exposure through Self Investment Publishing Company.

She is sought after as a speaker and is quoted often. One of her quotes was voted to be included in the Top 10 Healthy Thoughts of 2007.