Are you the type of person who always speaks their mind, even when it makes others uncomfortable?
Do you like to tell the truth even when others don’t want to hear it?
If so, you’re not alone
You have what is called an “honest personality”.
People like yourself tend to struggle navigating social situations because their blunt honesty often comes across as rudeness.
But you don’t think of yourself as rude and you’re certainly not trying to hurt anyone’s feelings.
In this article, I’ll share 10 signs that you’re not rude a rude person, you just have an honest personality.
Hopefully, it will give you some insight into why your words are being misunderstood so that you can keep being honest without seeming rude.
Let’s get started:
1) You don’t beat around the bush
This is one of the first signs of an honest personality that comes to mind. If you’ve got something to say, you get straight to the point.
For example, an employer might tell their employee:
“Listen, I’m going to be honest with you. You haven’t been performing well lately and it’s starting to affect the whole team. I’m counting on you to step up and improve your game. I’m going to have to see some results soon or I’ll be forced to consider other options. I know you’re capable of doing better, you’ve got this.”
While it may not be the nicest thing to hear, the employer in this case is being honest. They’re clearly conveying their message without sugarcoating anything.
At the same time, they’re not harsh or rude, in fact, they’re sympathetic and encouraging.
So, would you approach a similar situation in this way?
2) You’re not afraid to ask questions
I’m talking about questions that other people keep to themselves because they’re awkward or could make someone uncomfortable.
For example, if you see someone you don’t know that well, like a co-worker or a neighbor, looking upset, you’ll approach them and say:
“I hope you don’t mind me asking, are you ok? I know we don’t know each other that well, but if there’s something I can do to help… if you need someone to talk to, you can talk to me.”
Most people would be uncomfortable asking someone they don’t know well a question like this. They’ll be afraid of intruding or overstepping, and they’ll act like they haven’t noticed that anything is wrong.
3) You’re not afraid of giving someone some constructive criticism
If someone asks for your opinion, you won’t hold back.
For example, if someone’s made some lasagna that’s a bit dry and bland and they ask you what you think, you’ll be honest.
Because you’re not rude, you won’t tell them that it’s one of the least tasty meals you’ve ever eaten – you have more sense than that – but you won’t shy away from giving them some constructive criticism:
“It’s an interesting recipe… I hope you don’t mind me saying this, but I think you could have added some more sauce to make it juicer. Oh and next time, don’t be afraid to add some more salt.”
If they have a hard time hearing the truth, then I guess they shouldn’t ask you what you think.
4) You give unsolicited advice
The problem is that you don’t always wait to be asked your opinion.
You see, you can’t always tell when your advice is welcome and when it’s not. But because of your honest personality, you have a tendency to give your opinion to those who don’t want or need it.
For example, if you think that someone is doing something the wrong way, you’ll be sure to tell them how they should do it right. My grandpa was like that. He used to drive us crazy, God rest his soul.
On the one hand, you’re just giving your honest opinion and trying to help someone out.
On the other hand, your good intentions could be mistaken for rude and condescending behavior.
The person receiving your advice might think – Do you think I’m incapable of solving this on my own? Do I look stupid to you? Do you think you’re better than me?
And people who don’t know you that well will think that you’re being critical and judgemental.
All in all, I know you’re not being rude, but you might want to wait to be asked for your advice next time.
5) You have a blunt communication style
Honest personalities often have a blunt communication style which can seem harsh and even appear to be confrontational.
Here’s the thing: Because you’re so direct, you sometimes come off as someone who has zero empathy and consideration for other people.
People who don’t know you well may think that you don’t respect their opinions and will feel frustrated and even get angry with you.
Luckily, people who do know you realize that you’re just being blunt and that you mean no harm.
6) You point out the mustard
I know you’re probably asking yourselves, “What is she on about? Mustard?”
Let me explain:
You know how sometimes someone has mustard, toothpaste, or chocolate somewhere on their face? Or, they have salad or spinach stuck in their teeth?
And do you know what? They usually spend the whole day walking around like that without anyone pointing it out.
For some strange reason, people seem to be embarrassed to tell someone that they have something on their face or in their teeth.
Silly, I know.
That’s why as soon as you notice, you tell the other person, “Hey you’ve got a little something there.”
Your honesty will be appreciated by most people like myself who don’t want to keep walking around with spinach between their teeth. Of course, you may also make a few people self-conscious.
You win some, you lose some. In any case, you’re not saying it to be rude, you’re just trying to help them out by pointing out a fact.
7) You speak out for what you believe in
You make sure that you advocate your beliefs in a respectful way that’s not confrontational or dismissive.
For example, imagine discussing a controversial topic, such as politics or religion, with your coworker.
Now, no matter how crazy some people’s views may seem to you, you always try to stay open-minded and listen to what they have to say.
And if you don’t agree, you’ll politely say something like, “I understand that we all have opposing views on this issue, but with all due respect I believe you are wrong because XYZ..”
But even though you try your best to be tactful, there are always situations in which someone will disagree or think that it’s rude to disagree with them.
8) You hate small talk
Here’s the deal: If you find small talk to be shallow and a waste of time, it could be another sign that you’re an honest personality.
You’d rather be quiet than engage in small talk
So when you find yourself in the company of someone you don’t know very well or have nothing meaningful to discuss with, you have a tendency to remain silent.
And guess what?
While you’re just staying true to yourself, some people may find your behavior strange, arrogant, or even rude.
9) You don’t pretend to like something
A lot of people turn to white lies in order not to hurt other people’s feelings, but not you.
You have a hard time pretending to like something when you don’t, it’s because you can’t help but be honest.
For example, a friend buys you a book for your birthday and then asks you about it. If you didn’t like the book, you won’t pretend otherwise.
You’ll say, “I appreciate the gesture, but I’m really not a fan of this author. Every book of his, including this one, makes me fall asleep two pages in.”
Hopefully, because they know you, they won’t find you rude and will know not to get you any more books by that author.
10) You don’t pretend to agree to avoid a conflict
That’s not being rude, it’s being honest.
Why should you pretend to agree with something you think is wrong in order to avoid an argument?
You always stay true to yourself, no matter whose company you’re in.
You could be talking to your boss, your grandmother, or the ambassador of wherever, but if they say something you don’t agree with or find offensive, you won’t just nod your head in agreement.
The world would be a better place if more people had your courage.
The bottom line
Being rude and being honest aren’t mutually exclusive.
You can be honest and rude at the same time if you’re being disrespectful and inconsiderate when speaking the truth.
So, if you want to convey the truth without being rude, you need to keep in mind the other person’s feelings.
If you’re not sure if something could be perceived as rude, just take a moment to think about what you want to say and how others may perceive it before blurting it out.