“Consistency is the true foundation of trust. Either keep your promises or do not make them.” – Roy T. Bennett
Trust can be a truly fragile thing, but I believe that it is the foundation on which ALL relationships are built. In our core we want to, we need to trust!
We come into this world with absolut innocent trust. We trust that we will be held safe by our parents and the people around us. Our survival depends on this absolute trust. It is our experiences that we make – the good and the ugly – in the course of our lives as well as our mindset that change our ability and the way we trust others and even ourselves.
Trust is integral to happy and fulfilling relationships, and it is true for all relationships, whether they are professional or personal. Without trust, relationships fail because the insecurities and resentment that arise from mistrust will grow stronger and eventually destroy the trust that was once the foundation of the relationship.
Building trust is absolutely crucial for the survival of your friendships, romantic relationships, family relationships and even workplace connections.
So what makes us a trustworthy person?
You can build trust by being open and transparent from the very beginning; being dependable, consistent, and reliable; and taking responsibility when things do not work out quite how you planned. This applies to personal as well as professional relationships.
The more you love and care for someone, the longer you are willing to put up with an abuse of trust.
“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.” – Maya Angelou
I am one of those people who gladly and (some consider me naive) always grants others advance trust. This is sometimes not easy as it makes you incredibly vulnerable. Just recently I trusted someone again who was very important in my life, who was very important to me, and this trust was betrayed once again – for the umpteenth time. Even with the greatest patience and love, at some point even the last spark of trust extinguishes. To restore this is extremely difficult, if not impossible, especially if it was that one time too many and it saddens you to a breaking point.
“You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.” -Abraham Lincoln
When you make the choice to trust someone despite repeated betrayal, despite absolute unreliability simply because you care, this will eventually come to an end when it is that one time to many. What that means depends on each individual’s capacity for suffering, it depends on the depth of the feeling and the importance of that person in your life.
So what can you do when you have lost that trust and faith in a person? One option is to forgive that person. Another is to simply let it go. Both are easier said than done but are the kindest to your own wellbeing and your soul.
Trust always makes us vulnerable. But when we decide to do so, the reward can be simply magnificent. It is our vulnerability that gives us our humanity – and trust is an integral part of that. So even if you feel betrayed, even if you have lost faith and trust, don’t stop believing that there are trustworthy people out there who will have your back, honour their promises and whose words mean something. Do not let the bad experiences of your past influence your furture all too much. Learn from your mistakes but never forget that giving a bit of advanced trust is a good thing, as can be not giving up on others all too quickly as well because:
“He who does not trust enough will not be trusted.” – Lao Tzu