When I’m more worried about the perception of others than doing the right thing, then I’m not acting in my best interest. And when I let arrogance drive my decision-making, I know I’m going to regret it later. Being direct with myself when my ego gets in the way is my best tactic for preventing this kind of mistake.
On the other hand, I find subtlety better when dealing with others. Calling people out on a pride-driven misstep will almost always be met with resistance and denial. I’m trying to rely on gentle influence instead of overt criticism.
Brutal honesty’s effectiveness is not rooted in its truth, but a person’s willingness to hear it.