Let It Be Episode 19: Honesty (with ourselves)


This is probably my favourite Let it Be episode to date. And ironically, it’s one we weren’t able to map out very well in advance because we didn’t really know where we were going with it. Which (as you all know!) is not how I like to do things! But … where we got to was so interesting.

The first thing I did was murder the reading of this poem (so please read it below first before listening!). It’s by Portia Nelson and it’s called There’s a Hole in My Sidewalk.

Chapter One
I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in.
I am lost… I am helpless.
It isn’t my fault.
It takes forever to find a way out.

Chapter Two
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don’t see it.
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in the same place.
But it isn’t my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter Three
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in… it’s a habit.
My eyes are open.
I know where I am.
It is my fault… I get out immediately.

Chapter Four
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

Chapter Five
I walk down another street.

As you can tell from the poem, getting ourselves out of bad situations requires honesty with ourselves. In this podcast Brooke and I talk about why this is so hard, why the stories we tell ourselves are important … and how to know which of those stories should be listened to, and which should be pushed back against.

Not sure how to listen in to these podcasts?

  • If you have an iPhone – the easiest thing to do is open up the Podcasts app (which is on all iPhones) and search for ‘Let it Be’. When it comes up, simply subscribe. Once you’re subscribed, all our episodes will automatically download on to your phone (and we will love you to the moon and back).
  • If you’re on your computer, the direct link to our show in iTunes is here. Once you’ve subscribed in iTunes, it will download our episodes into your iTunes and you can then add them to whichever iDevice you like from there.
  • And if all else fails, you can listen to the show directly via the player below – or download the mp3 to transfer to your audio listening device of choice 🙂

Comments 9

  1. This was a really confronting episode, but in a good way.
    In my journey to be more responsible for my part in what ever happens, I’ve managed in many instances to actually go even further and now I can easily fully blame myself for things that I had zero input into….I have found that my own shame and guilt is easier to bare than the disappointment, anger, resentment or whatever other feeling my family members have and so I find myself taking the blame for their stuff…let me tell you this is NOT good. I’m not a saint though there are also still plenty of moments when I look to find someone or something else to blame for my own stuff ups.
    I did really connect with your story about how your husband pointed out that when you are under pressure you resort to those unhelpful practices, I think we all do that to an extent, but surely being aware of it must help us to get out of that bloody hole much quicker.

    1. Yep I totally agree with you Kate – it’s a very short jump from being honest with ourselves to blaming ourselves for everything! It’s bloody hard getting the balance right!

  2. In my family, we’d always sing-song “I smell burning Mar-Tyyyyyr” when someone easily accepted blame unnecessarily (just amongst ourselves, and never in a hurtful way). Maybe if you hear some schoolyard bully singing that at you, you’ll stop accepting that blame?

    Good luck!

  3. Kelly, you let your Mean Girl out when you typed up this post. You tripped over a WORD, I think; not even a phrase or a whole line, in your reading of the poem. That’s not a “murder”! LOL

    I think I’m your husband and you’re mine, when it comes to awareness of honesty with ourselves. Also, Good Job powering through your shyness at the conference! Rest assured that, should we ever get to meet IRL, you needn’t figure out how to start a conversation with me. I’ll start it… it’ll probably sound like a lot of fan-girl gibberish at first, but then we’ll go deep pretty soon. Even as an extrovert, I still abhor small-talk.

    1. Oh no – it wasn’t so much the stuffing up of the words – it’s just that I know that from the author’s point of view, I would have got all the delivery and the inflections wrong. The perils of reading work that is not yours! I was wincing for the poet!!

  4. Hello! I just started listening to Let it Be about 3 weeks ago and I love it! I especially love the stuff on minimalism and self-acceptance. I would love you to do one on not taking yourself too seriously. I’ve been consciously making positive changes in my life for about a year now namely meditating, simplifying and excersizing. I really identify with you because I am also an introvert and have a lot of troubles with social anxiety/awkwardness. Since being more consciously aware of my mind-state I’ve noticed my social awkwardness getting worse somehow. I found it much easier to joke around and be lighthearted before I started paying attention to the inner workings of my mind. Also a lot of the things I am interested in now – yoga, meditation, minimalism, are not things people necessarily enjoy talking about. I feel like this is because I have perhaps been taking myself too seriously. Do you ever find this? And if so how do you overcome it?

    1. Hey Mikaela – this is a very interesting topic idea (probably because I too am one for taking myself too seriously!). I am talking with Brooke about doing a show on this for sure!

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