“To thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day,
thou canst not then be false to anyone.” — William Shakespeare
How can you be faithful to anyone if you’re not faithful to yourself?
If you ask Shakespeare, the secret to staying faithful to anyone or anything is to first and foremost be true to yourself.
Ask anyone who has been unfaithful — whether in a relationship, in business, in whatever — why they did it and you will hear a plethora of answers to justify their actions.
“I did it to get attention. I didn’t feel loved. I wasn’t appreciated. I felt I was being taken for granted … ”
But at the heart of every act of infidelity is a person who was unfaithful to themselves first.
Something was missing.
They wanted something, but weren’t getting it. And no matter how hard they tried to communicate their desires, the other party just wasn’t hearing the message.
For a long time, they compromised those desires in order not to hurt someone’s feelings.
They said nothing, hoping the other person would catch on … pretending everything was OK … putting that person’s needs before their own … and yet, nothing changed.
Until the silent cry for help became so loud in their soul there was only one way to get attention.
To be unfaithful.
Risking it all seemed the only way to get what they wanted.
To be clear, infidelity is not about sex. OK, sometimes it might be, but that’s not the type of infidelity we’re discussing here. Sexual needs and desires can easily be satisfied. The spiritual ones, however, are about connection. Once the soul’s sweet spot has been stimulated, the point of no return isn’t far behind. And there’s nothing you can do to stop it.
Infidelity may seem like the most selfish act of all. Those who have never crossed the line are often quick to judge those who have.
Ironically, there’s only one way to prevent infidelity.
By allowing those who we want to be true to us to be true to themselves. To trust them enough to let them be selfish.
Tell someone they can’t have something and they are going to want it even more. Grab a hold of someone and try to control them and they will always find a way to cut loose from the chains that bind their heart.
Let go. And while you’re at it, be true to yourself as well.
Is it risky? You bet it is.
But the alternative is even riskier … living a life pretending that everything is OK, when it’s really not.