Introduction to Trust
Trust is a rare-Earth element, and a central mission of disaster capitalism is to get rid of the stuff. But we humans need one another, and trust is oxygen to any community.
Yes, it’s a jungle out there. There are a lot of scammers in these seemingly desperate times. The internet breeds them like an ant farm, and that is spilling over into the rest of reality. Yet trust is social and spiritual oxygen. Without it, no peace of mind is possible. No healthy relationships are possible. Here are a few thoughts on the topic. Please share your responses, thoughts and ideas.
All trust starts with self-trust. Ultimately you must rely on your own decisions, and your ability to learn from your mistakes. If you do not trust yourself, you can’t trust your decision to trust anyone else. This is the place to start, and that involves paying closer attention to people, what they say and do, and how you respond to them.
Everyone has had their trust violated. That is not an excuse to not trust, or to violate others; it’s something to be aware of. Like all injuries, those involving trust will tend to repeat until you work your way out of the cycle. Until then, it’s not going to help to treat everyone skeptically or dismissively. Meanwhile, you must be aware of your issues, use what you know, and count on people you know are reliable.
Be trustworthy. Be a person of your word, honor your commitments and speak truthfully. Not speaking your truth is damaging to trust, and your confidence in yourself. The process of being real must start with you.
Forget about power. Many people have a tendency to want to get power over others. This is an absurd concept, despite how pervasive it is. This can involve various forms of deception, withholding, games, or using money or sex as leverage. All of this is not only damaging to trust; it’s the furthest thing from it.
Be cautious around people who make sex a moral issue. Sex is biological, social, spiritual, creative, loving, recreational — anything but a moral issue. Beware of moralists. They are usually control freaks. Ethics is another matter entirely, and sexual relationships call for a high degree.
Extend a little trust as an experiment. If you make an appointment with someone, do they show up on time? Do they show up at all? Pay attention to the relationship between what people say and what they do. Notice whether they are truthful with others. Notice whether they speak kindly of others. Notice whether they tend to keep secrets.
Explore mirroring. Imagine someone is a mirror, and you’re looking for your reflection in them. How do you feel, and what do you see? Imagine you are a mirror for another person. What are they looking for in you?
Cancel your agenda. Dinner or a walk in the park do not need to be associated with marriage, sex, going deeper, settling down or the next meeting. Stay in the moment and focus on who someone is now, and be who you are now. Romantic ideas are a serious impediment to trust. Ungrounded expectations kill relationships.
If someone treats you disrespectfully, move on. It’s not reasonable to expect someone to change a deeply ingrained pattern like disrespect. You are the one who must lower your tolerance to bad treatment. Treat people with basic dignity, and hold up that standard for how you are treated. This is best established early in any relationship.
Lying is an excellent reason not to trust someone. If you catch someone lying, you know all you need to know about whether you can trust them. This includes lying to you and to others. If you find yourself lying to someone, you need to have a long talk with yourself. While lying about sex is considered normal, it is, in truth, extremely toxic and dangerous.
Jealousy is a sign of violence and aggression. It is one of the early shades of that set of emotions, a sign that someone does not respect your autonomy. Jealousy is a sure sign that a relationship is headed in an abusive direction. Notice whether people feel jealous toward you, and whether you feel jealous toward them. This article will help with this complex issue.
Building trust is a process. It’s organic, like any kind of growth process in nature. Focus on getting to know someone, and go from one experience to the next. Notice whether someone you’re coexisting with tends to learn and grow from their experiences.
This is all an experiment. Just because you’re careful and treat people respectfully does not mean you won’t get hurt. People tend to bring their inner conflict into their relationships; the less they have, the less they will import. Pay attention and learn from your experiences, your mistakes and your good-byes.