In my brief, empiric and very unofficial polls on IG, any time I have asked about trust ⅔ of people say they have a hard time with trust.
¾ out of people tend to say trust is to be earned, while the remaining quarter says trust is given.
And when trust has been lost, it takes a lot to earn that trust back, rarely is it given at that point.
Here’s the thing though, we always trust based on the level of our comfort with the other person or the situation we are in.
Let’s say that you have a family member or a friend that has stolen from you once, now you trust that it will happen again. This leads you to be more guarded around them so the level of trust is lowered with that particular person.
Trust is a basic need.
If you ask me, trust is one of our basic needs in life. Look at children, they roam around with no care in the world with immense amounts of trust in themselves, in others and their surroundings. At each stage as they’re learning a new skill, they keep on trying until they have got it down and move on to something else. They don’t think much about it until they get older and some type of evidence has appeared not to have that level of trust, usually either by life experience or the older people who affect the stories they tell the child.
When our immediate sense of safety and security isn’t threatened, trust becomes a non-issue. It’s innate that we have trust within and without, internally and externally.
Say you go out to eat at a restaurant, you trust that the food and beverages you’re about to consume give you the experience you’re looking for. You don’t think about food poisoning, if someone is going to rob the place, or whether you’ll have a heart attack. You don’t look over your shoulder fearing that something bad is going to happen or go bother the chef in the kitchen that the food isn’t poisonous. Rather you trust that the experience will give you what you were looking for.
We give parts of ourselves based on our levels of comfort to another human being. Trust can be built through connection, time spent together, a conversation — there are many ways, depending on the individual’s needs and values, and the dynamic between the people.
Trust in self is essential.
Building trust is all about building that trust within yourself first. Having that sense of confidence that you have your own back, no matter what. If you can’t trust in yourself, how are you able to trust anybody or anything else? The foundation of trust is set internally; you trust that you are given what you need at the time that you need it. Having an innate knowing or belief in yourself to know you always have the knowledge, resources, and tools available to you for what you need.
What does it look like to trust yourself? One of the four agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz states always do your best. So, affirm to yourself I am always doing the very best I can. Knowing that nothing is against you, and everything serves to further. Giving yourself some short key phrases starts the process of shifting the trust within yourself.
Trust the Universe.
Once you’re starting to trust yourself, you inherently become more trusting of the Universe. You’re never given more than what you can handle.
If nothing is against you, and everything serves to further — can you even get upset when things don’t go as planned. It’s all just an experience. During quiet times, you rest and feel at peace. When trials and tribulations come around, you know you’re equipped to find that inner strength to get through what is going on. You already know you’ve got this because you’ve been through the hardships before.
Trust in Others.
The last step is then trusting others. We all come from the same Source Energy. Everything that is around you is really a reflection of, well, you. What does it look like to trust the other? It really is trusting yourself, trusting the universe.
When arguments happen with other people, you’re really just arguing with that part of yourself that feels the conflict. It’s the subconscious mind that is making itself present.
Signs of Distrust
The signs of distrust can show up in various ways. When there’s a lack of trust, you might be thinking about what the other person would think if you did or said the thing you really wanted to, thus thinking for the other person.
You may be acting on what the other person might want or need instead of trusting your own desires, going above and beyond what you’re capable of giving to the other person, thus neglecting your own needs.
Kicking people out of your life or turning away, threatening to leave. Threats and ultimatums never work, it creates further conflict in a situation that is already tense. Seeing others as a threat is also a sign of distrust, this can show up in situations where your partner is hanging out with the opposite gender and you start to feel some type of way about it.
So, how do you build trust?
It’s a dance; the belief in yourself comes after the work, after the execution. The reason why I know I am badass and do hard things is because I have done the hard things before. You’ve lived through it. It’s not a theory, it’s not something on your to do list; the evidence of it is the lived experience. The more you do hard things, when hard things come, the less phased you are. And there is a certain level of confidence that comes with that.
Be your own biggest cheerleader
Befriend yourself. What would you do or say to a friend who was in your predicament? Surely, it wouldn’t be anything negative. Rather, you would encourage them for a way forward. The most important relationship we have is with ourselves, so why not give yourself the encouragement that you’re looking for? You can change your perspective by changing the way you talk to yourself. Any win, big or small, celebrate it! Cheer yourself on for doing a good job, cheer yourself forward even when you don’t feel like it.
You cannot screw it up
What if I told you there is no way that you can mess up anything? Everything serves a purpose, it’s all lessons learned. Would that lift off the pressure you have on yourself? Trust is a promise to self that you follow through in what you set out to do; when that occurs you’re building more of it. However, when you neglect the promise kept to yourself, it’s easy to start the blame game and think you’ve somehow messed up everything. Well, you haven’t.
As my dad always tells me, the sun rises again in the morning, without failure. Therefore, you have a chance to begin all over again in the morning.
Listening to your actions and feelings
Your feelings serve as your guideposts. They are there for a reason, they nudge the way forward for you. They serve as information. Whether it is anger, sadness, joy, fear, insecurity, loneliness; they have a message to tell you of where you’re currently at. Respect all the feelings and the emotions, it’s there to teach you. Trust that when you’re ready to move on from these feelings/emotions, you’re ready to take aligned action. You’ve got the power.
We are all connected, we all come from the same Source Energy. Everything that is mirrored to you in your relationships, is a direct reflection of your internal wellbeing.
Once your sense of security and safety are no longer threatened, your innate knowingness of having your own back and so does the universe, and utilizing your feelings as guideposts, that sense of trust has become a non-issue.
In conclusion, the highest level of trust is for it to no longer be a problem or something that you necessarily have to think about. It’s an innate need, shared with people based on the levels of comfort. And the polls to ask whether trust is earned or given, becomes irrelevant. That’s what I personally desire as I want to see the relationships, be it intimate or otherwise, flourish. And all of it begins with the relationship of the self.