Number 12 in a series
How high do you hold trust in your relationships?
In every relationship, a high level of trust translates into palpable feelings of serenity, excitement, passion and optimism. These feelings typically accompany the beginning of life in a new community, such as when moving to a town, starting a new job, falling in love, or bringing a baby into the world. But, the heart-connected feelings that accompany trust dissipate as trust is eroded.
Attempting to relate in a sea of distrust is like trying to swim through a stream polluted with more and more debris. Low trust spawns adversarial relationships that must slosh through the muck and mire of defensiveness, cynicism, and indifference. Stalemates, resistance, rebellion, boredom, arguments and power struggles weave a picture that bears little resemblance to the tapestry that existed before trust was eroded.
For most of my life, I focused on whether or not I could trust other people. I worried about whether I would be lied to and whether I was being taken advantage of. And sure enough, suffering many experiences with people not being honest with me served to reinforce my mantra “Always be on guard.”
Frankly, I never considered what it means to be worthy of trust. Thinking about being trustworthy opened up an entirely new dimension in my life. The kind of interpersonal relationships for which I truly yearned became possible when I started facing the question, “Am I worthy of other’s trust and am I trustworthy with myself?”
Greater self-trust gives me the confidence that I can handle the truth and frees me from living in the cocoon of denial. My intuition is tuned-in to knowing when people are being straight with me. I don’t have to rely on them telling me the truth, I know.
When I sense that I may not be being told the truth, I want to learn even if it means finding out things like my child is experimenting with drugs or sex, or my spouse and I are distant and that may lead to, or has lead to, infidelity.
Becoming trustworthy does not result from a single act. It is a process that builds over time. Only when others are consistently treated respectfully do they come to believe that I am worthy of their trust. Self-trust is built by dependably treating myself respectfully.
Interpersonal upsets provide a wonderful opportunity for learning about becoming more trustworthy. Opening to learning about my part in any difficulty, allows me to learn where I have not been respectful to others and myself.
As I’ve previously written, when connected to my heart I cannot compromise my own integrity or that of another person no matter what they do or say. Learning about and transforming the beliefs that create fear and disconnect me from my heart into heart-connected beliefs is an important aspect of becoming more trustworthy. (More about this will be in a future post.) Learning what it means to treat others and myself respectfully, another inescapable part of that journey is the focus of the next post.
For Your Journey
- On a scale of 1-10 where do you think your trustworthiness would be rated by each of the following people: spouse, children, boss, and friends?
- What have you learned about yourself from situations where others have not been honest with you?
- What are you doing or what will you be doing to become more trustworthy?
- Share-it-forward. Share with another person what you’re learning about being trustworthy.
First in the Series: From Head to Heart
BECOMING YOUR OWN HERO illuminates a path available to us all to attain the kind of personal power demonstrated by our most revered and inspirational heroes. Marianne Williamson, #1 New York Times best-selling author said, “I highly recommend this illuminating and touching look into the possibilities of staying connected to our hearts, even when facing difficult situations.”