Trustworthy People Inspire Trust in Others
Trustworthy people inspire trust in others. They create a safe path for us to walk on. They light up our darkness. Trustworthy people make us feel like we can calmly face uncertainty because we know we can rely on them just like we could in the past.
Trustworthy people don’t show it just in the big, grand gestures. They also do it in the little things. In fact, those small gestures are much more valuable than you may think.
Trustworthy people don’t resort to lies to justify themselves
Trustworthy people make us feel calmer and more confident.
Think about someone you may know who always cancels on you and your plans. They even sometimes cancel while you’re already on your way to meet up with them. They also show other signs that maybe you shouldn’t trust them. A friend shouldn’t be the source of such uncertainty. After going back on promises and plans, they find all kinds of excuses to justify why.
Little fibs that add up to something devastating: a lack of trust. And a lack of trust kills relationships. It fills us with insecurity and doubt. Uncertainty is the silent assassin of many otherwise healthy relationships.
It’s totally natural to not be interested in hanging out with some people. We shouldn’t be ashamed of it, plus it would be strange if we always got along with everyone. In some ways, the solution seems simple. If something doesn’t interest me, I’ll walk away from it since I don’t want to commit myself. However, some people have such a strong need to please everyone that they ignore their instincts.
Maybe deep inside they know that something is going wrong in their lives. Something isn’t working as it should. Think about a time when you did something just to please someone else. You probably felt uncomfortable, like you “sold out.”
However, with people who are important to us, we need to reflect on how reliable we are for them. We need to think about if we want to be trustworthy or if it’s actually something that’s not so important to us.
Make your words matter if you want to be trustworthy
Think about a time when you didn’t want to do something, but instead of telling the truth you gave an excuse so you didn’t have to do it. Or think about other times when you committed to something and didn’t come through. Most likely you felt shame. Maybe you even felt regret.
But…why regret? The healthiest option would be to regret giving your word when you weren’t sure you could do what you said you could. Sometimes we make little commitments without objectively evaluating if we can actually be true to our word. The truth is, when something is really important to us we commit to things with the best of intentions.
In this sense, we must be aware of how breaking promises harms our relationships. Trust and security are the foundation of a good relationship. If I don’t trust someone and I feel insecure with them, I’m not getting much out of that relationship. It doesn’t let me be myself.
Evaluating your commitments is a good start
If I systematically break my promises I damage other people’s ability to trust me.
That said, of course there will be times when I can’t follow through with my commitments. Sometimes trustworthy people have to put off their promises. They’re not perfect. Sometimes unforeseen events come up and we have to handle those first.
But here we’re talking about making sure that we don’t systematically break our word without any real justification.
We have the right to not commit to everyone and everything. To not commit to something that we don’t want to or that we know we won’t be able to do. It is within our rights to be authentic and honest with others and ourselves. However, it’s also important to see how our words matter.
Thinking this way, it will be easier for us to look at our relationships and why we behave like we do. Once we understand that our word, as small as it may seem, has value for both ourselves and others, then we will give it the importance it deserves. Then, hopefully, we won’t throw our words around so easily.