There is trouble with trust.
Now, trust is pretty cool and amazing. It is an essential ingredient for any healthy relationship or organization, and I write a lot about how to build it and the benefits of having it.
But it also comes with some trouble. This trouble affects you and me on a very personal level and we should be aware of it before we decide to trust someone or something.
Here are three things you should consider before giving your trust:
1. It opens you to risk – Without risk there is no need for trust. People often think distrust is the opposite of trust, but it’s not. The opposite of trust is control. We don’t trust because we don’t want to lose control. If you want to experience the benefits of trust, then you have to accept some risk. Yes, you may get burned once in a while. That’s the risk of playing the game of life. But most of the time you end up winning, and winning big! Trust is worth the risk.
2. It requires investment from you – Trust is built through reciprocity. I give some to you, you give some back to me by demonstrating your trustworthiness, and I in turn give more to you. It’s a virtuous cycle that feeds upon itself. The gift that never stops giving. Giving…that’s the key word. Trust requires you to give. You give in to risk…you give up control…you give by being trustworthy…you give by experiencing pain and turmoil when someone breaks your trust. It can cost you time, money, and emotional energy, but you give because it’s worth it. So before you give away your trust, pause to consider the other ways you will need to give to nurture it or even rebuild it.
3. It can (and will) get messy – Trusting others is not always a smooth road. Any time people are involved it’s bound to get messy and that’s definitely the case with trust. Sometimes people will abuse your trust and you’ll feel like you’re on the losing side. Other times your efforts in building trust with others will take longer than expected and you’ll feel like giving up. Regardless of the situation, you’ll eventually hit some pot holes on the road to building trust. That’s normal and you’re not alone. Push through the messiness because the outcome is worth it.
Feel free to add a comment and share your thoughts about other costs people should count before giving their trust.