When we are with people we can trust; we feel relaxed. Deciding who to trust and to what extent is a lifelong art.
“The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them.”
– Ernest Hemingway
The importance and need to trust
David DeSteno, states in his brilliant book: The Truth About Trust: “the need to trust implies one fundamental fact: you’re vulnerable.”
A baby has no choice but to trust its parents. As we grow; we learn to test the trust of the people around us. We lose trust and then mistrust; yet we find trust in strangers. Everyday, we are trusting people and things; to love us, to do as we expect, to work, to protect us, to stay alive! So when we are reassured in our trust; we feel relaxed.
We can look to a dictionary for a literal definition of trust; yet it is an invisible force that only really exists in our minds. So ‘trust’ is a huge concept in: sociology, psychology and philosophy. Yet here I wanted to take a light-hearted look at ways of trusting to relax with the people you meet in life.
Definition of trust (noun and verb)
1a: assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something
b: one in which confidence is placed
2a: dependence on something future or contingent: HOPE
1a: to rely on the truthfulness or accuracy of : BELIEVE trust a rumor
b: to place confidence in : rely ona friend you can trust
c: to hope or expect confidently trusts that the problem will be resolved soon
Without trust you will never feel truly relaxed
If your trust has been broken just once by a bad experience; it is easy to try and protect yourself by not trusting anyone ever again! Yet, release all your anger and hurt feelings, in a therapeutic way. Then let yourself trust again and you will soon rediscover the pure love and happiness that comes from trust!
It is said that Arab culture is built on a mutual mistrust; yet it has been proven that they lose out in many ways. Opportunities and experiences are avoided or delayed; which could lead to a pretty sad and boring life: https://www.japantimes.co.jp/opinion/2016/07/11/commentary/world-commentary/roots-mistrust-middle-east-societies/#.XpmlWshKjIU
In popular culture, there is fear of false arrest; simply because the police have been lied to so many times, they trust no one! Or have you ever seen a healthy poker player?! Do crocodiles have any friends? In the old cowboy films; did the bad guys ever look relaxed?
Closer to home: do relationships without trust last long?
I believe we are born with a natural want to trust. We are then fed and protected by our parents when we are young and this leaves a lifelong desire to trust and be trusted. Friends and family can push our abilities to trust, to breaking point. Yet it seems to hurt most when a loved one betrays all the love, effort and dedication that you have given to them. However, trust me when I say the best thing to do is trust again!
First of all; let out the anger that protects you from being hurt anymore. Go for a long walk and scream and shout at the top of your lungs. Exercise until you are so tired you can only sleep. Read my blog on breathing techniques; and become calm:
Then try to calmly and logically understand why your trust has been broken. Maybe your partner could never be true because they are suffering from mistrust themselves? Maybe your partner has unresolved issues; that all your love and care could never resolve? Maybe you caused them to lose trust in you first and never realized through your own ignorance?
However your trust was lost; accept that you can still trust yourself. If you did the best you could; then don’t look back in anger, look back in acceptance and remember people still trust you.
… to the future
If you lost trust in your partner or feel betrayed by an ex partner; then it is never too late to trust again. When the raw emotion and flames of temper have subsided; why not build bridges and have a new but honest and realistic friendship? This is so much more important when children are involved; because our inability to trust should not be passed onto future generations.
Therefore, hold up your hands and smoke the proverbial peace pipe. Sit down and discuss openly why things went wrong. Your partner may say harsh truths but realise that is far better than rebuilding trust on a foundation of old lies. Be realistic, be honest, be pragmatic; to rebuild and relax in a brave new world of trust.
The benefits of trust
So maybe you can start a relationship afresh and be happier, stronger but more relaxed together? Maybe an ex partner can still be a life long friend because you still remember and can see why you got on so well together in the first place. Maybe you will meet new partners but realise the grass is not always greener! If you trust people and show you can be trusted; you will always be happy and relaxed with many friends and family for years to come who appreciate your trust and good nature.
I do not want to go too deeply into the psychology of trust. Not because I am not qualified; but because I also do not want to bore you! Yet the interesting diagram below by Robert Plutchik; demonstrates what comes from the ability to trust. He stated that there are eight basic emotions that are related to each other: anger, anticipation, joy, trust, fear, surprise, sadness and disgust. When you combine the emotions of trust with fear; you become submissive. Yet combine the emotion of trust with joy and you have love!
Keep trust alive!
So you have realised the importance of trust. You are in a new relationship and want to make it stronger; or in an old relationship that is going the distance after a slip along the way. To keep the trust alive a little work and concentration is needed everyday!
Trust does comes naturally. Yet remember that you can demonstrate your ability to trust and be trusted in simple ways:
– be honest but kind in the words you use
– be honest and tell people your thoughts and not what you think they want to hear.
– admit mistakes and errors in judgement. You will be more trusted ever more.
– be open to trusting strangers; for you are a stranger too!
– trust your feelings
– trust your decisions
– trust yourself; if no one else will!
Therefore I trust I will find you well?
So we learnt to trust when we were young. We are reminded from time to time when we lose trust. Yet take time to consider your actions and make sure they are trustworthy and true. To paraphrase the bible: ‘treat and trust others as you would like to be treated and trusted’. However, when all else fails; you need internal strength and calm, so always trust yourself.
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