Building trust with someone new or from our past can be a challenging task. Especially if you have given trust a try and it has not ended well. In my last blog post about trust, I wrote about why trusting ourselves is the probably the most important step to learn how to trust others read it here https://mindbal.com/trusting-intuition-can-help-relationships/. Sure we can try and trust others without putting trust in ourselves first, but we are ultimately the foundation of all trust in our own lives. Once we can identify what trust means for our self and how we choose to define it, we then can begin sharing a healthy trust with others.
Trusting others involves setting boundaries, listening and being aware. Many times in marriage counseling I help my couples learn how to set boundaries which helps us know where to draw “that line” to identify whether trust has been broken or not. Setting boundaries also helps us heed to warning signs so we can communicate our feelings and expectations to others. Many times I see clients come in for couples counseling and share how they got into new relationships without speaking about trust. If a couple does not discuss where the boundary of trust is, how will either party know when they have crossed that “line”? Most people assume that trust is common knowledge or carries a common definition that everyone “should know”. Sharing your definition of trust creates a boundary that you and your partner will then decide on whether or not to maintain it or not.
Listening is very important when trusting others. Many times just because we share our definitions of trust and set a boundary we just let things go. We stop listening because we think that we already articulated what we need and now we do not have to do anything further. Listening to our intuition is key. If your gut tells you something is off, then listen. Investigate your instinct, ask questions and listen to yourself. Your gut is there to protect you and help you always. Learn the difference in what your intuition is verses emotional reaction in my last blog post on trust https://mindbal.com/trusting-intuition-can-help-relationships/.
Following these steps does not guarantee an over night fix, nor is it a slam dunk that you have trust figured out now. However, beginning to apply these steps can provide you with groundwork on how to begin practicing trusting others in a healthy way. In many cases, working with a professional couples therapist that specializes in helping couples or marriage counseling is necessary. Whether you want to try building trust on your own or by working with a marriage or couples counselor; just remember building trust in our self and others will take time to learn through practice and most importantly by choice.
Many times trust has been attempted and failed which can be difficult to want to try again. In the next blog post on trust, I will talk about how you can learn to trust your partner again after the trust has been broken. I’ve been building on the topic of trust slowly in hopes that each of you reading these blog posts on trust can slowly process each step of reaching your trust potential. Trust is not something that we earn, give easy or take away quickly. Trust can be a choice that we create, define and decide what it looks like, who we choose to share it with and how we need it for ourselves. Instead of giving someone else the power to “steal” your trust, choose who you will trust beginning with yourself, knowing that no one including you is perfect and we do the best we can each day and each choice we make.