Trust Climbing Wall and Net
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Trust: Who Do You Trust? 5 Proven Keys to Consider

Who do you trust? In our “faith-based” society (non-religious context) trust is one of the keys that keeps us working together. Of course, lack-of-trust (faith) in one another creates divides and conflicts between us. In this article, let’s take a look at trust together and ask the hard question – “Am I building or destroying trust?”

Trust - Little girl doesn't trust dentist
We trust each other in ways we don’t often consider

“Faith-based” society? Faith = Trust

“… trust is a key component to any relationship

We live in a “faith-based” society. Now before you decide to skip this article thinking that I’m referring to any one religion – I am not. No, instead, I’m referring to the trust we have in others throughout our daily lives.

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While we may talk about how poor other drivers are on the road – we trust that most other drivers are competent enough that we can share the road with them. While we may ask questions and get second opinions, we trust doctors, nurses, and other health professionals to help us when we are sick or injured. We trust our government to run free and fair elections. We trust restaurants and grocery stores to provide food that will not make us sick.

Most agree that trust is a key component to any relationship – business or otherwise. Given its importance – how  much effort are you spending on developing your trust in others and with others?

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Trusting cheerleaders during routine

Who do you trust?

Trust – A feeling or conscious decision?

“… I ignored the feelings because I wanted a different outcome …”

Throughout my career I’ve experienced times where something “just felt right” or “just did not feel right”. I’m sure you’ve experienced that as well. Did you stop and think about why you were feeling that way? Personally, looking back in time, there are some situations where I ignored the feelings because I wanted a different outcome. In most cases, looking deeper into why I felt a particular way would have helped me make better decisions and build stronger relationships.

So how can you use rational thought to help develop trust? To me there are 5 keys to developing trust. They are:

Keys to trust:

  1. Be honest and kind.
    Find ways of communicating honestly with others while still being kind. You’ve heard “the truth may hurt” but you do get the chance to decide how painful by choosing your words. Are you holding the ladder for someone or shaking it?
  2. Start with trust.
    While you may agree that “trust is earned” how do you feel when others start with a position of distrust and offer no clear way to earn your trust? “Starting with trust” doesn’t mean complete faith but it does mean that you’re willing to trust them until they have broken that trust.
  3. Give real praise.
    How often do you express real gratitude to those around you? I’m not suggesting that you become a “cheerleader” (in fact, insincere praise can erode trust). Instead, a simple thank you followed by how it helped you or others can mean a great deal to those around you.
  4. Share – Information, Responsibility, Credit.
    Do you find yourself taking on the “hard”, “rewarding”, “or other tasks while delegating only small, unimportant tasks to others? Trust me, others notice that as a lack of trust. Also, when you’re working on a task with others – do you talk about the contributions others made as much or more than your own? Sharing the load and credit can go a long way to developing trust with others.
  5. Be consistent.
    Are you consistently demonstrating the 4 prior keys? Do you apply them with someone that you’ve worked with for a few months but not the “newbie” on the team? Being consistent in your positive, visible behaviors will build trust. Inconsistency can erode that trust.

While I don’t suggest that every decision and thought can be rationalized, I have found it helpful to look at why I or others may be feeling a particular way to help understand and possibly work to develop more positive outcomes.

When looking at feelings of distrust, taking an objective look may help create that understanding.

Unfortunately there are far too many people willing to embrace criticizing others rather than thinking critically about subjects.

It’s likely that you’ve observed this in person online and may even be dealing with it at your workplace.

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For example, you may not trust someone who always seems to be angry with you and may avoid working with them.

Taking a moment to think through this situation and have a conversation with them you may find that they are concerned with pending layoffs (they may not say this directly though they may say enough for you to feel some confidence in the assessment).

That may not make working with the person easier, though your interest in them could help build the relationship and at least help avoid taking their actions personally.

Common career complaints such as “career dissatisfaction” and “career confusion” are the direct result of lack of “career trust.”

Clarity in your career starts and ends with understanding yourself, your values, your motivations. In some cases, lack of trust in ourselves can have a much more profound impact on our careers than lack of trust in others.

Final Thoughts….

Living in a “faith-based” society we can choose to approach each other with some level of respect and trust allowing us to work together or approach each other with distrust and disrespect making it difficult to ever “earn” a small bit of trust. What approach will you choose?

Using rational, objective thought to test and understand your feelings of trust or distrust can be difficult. Working through the process and having some trust in yourself can also be difficult without some objective guidance. These may good reasons to talk with me as a career coach.

As your career coach, I can be the confidential, objective sounding board to help you explore and develop this and other skills in a safe, non-judgmental space. I’m here to help you when you are ready – reach out to me through this link and I’ll be glad to discuss options with you.

What do you think about this topic? Do you agree with my assessment that we live in a “faith-based” society and that trust is crucial to success?

I’d love to get your thoughts and feedback on this and other blog posts. Drop me a line at info@mindringconsulting.com or comment on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Instagram. And sign up for my newsletter below to be notified about upcoming articles and events from Mindring Consulting!

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Helpful videos:

Should You Trust Your Gut? Simon Sinek

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