The most important ingredient in any relationship is trust, as it is the foundation of all human connections: from friendships, everyday interactions with people and intimate relationships. It governs all the interactions we have with each other, no one would drive a car, walk down the road, or get on a plane or visit a hospital, if we didn’t trust that other people took their responsibilities seriously. We trust that other drivers will stay in their lanes and not mount the pavements and that conductors, pilots and doctors will be sober and alert while working. Trust is something that we all need in our lives, but it can easily be wobbled, if we don’t trust ourselves, our lives, our health, our future or the world we live in, then life is going to be very uncomfortable for us. We have looked at how lots of feeling can impact how we feel, from guilt to shame, anxiety to anger, if we have been struggling with these emotions then we can have lost trust in ourselves and other. This will make life difficult, if we can’t trust who we are as individuals making any steps forward in our lives will be slow and laborious as without trust in ourselves we will find making decisions very hard. If making decisions about everyday things is not as easy and quick as it should be, then it can take up lots of time and mental effort in that tedious process of internal negotiation into what is the right answer. For people with personal inner trust issues, they will be indecisive and insecure in the majority of the things they do in life, particularly in those everyday things. Of course, if it a big decision then it is absolutely essential that we take the time to think things through, being rash is not what trusting our inner instinct and believing in ourselves is all about. But if this turns into a never-ending cycle of thoughts and insecurities over the answer, with no firm solution being found then trust in ourselves could be at the bottom of our issues over this.
If we second guess ourselves over those everyday things, then what we will automatically be doing is triggering a level of anxiety within us. I have talked a lot about the mind being black and white, but also your unconscious mind isn’t rational or intuitive either, its habit based, the more we add in habits of fear and insecurity the more fearful and insecure we will feel.
Without that trust in who we are then our relationships with other people with suffer too, if we don’t trust ourselves, maybe we can’t trust other people either because of this. Again, this should not be seen as a blind trust where we don’t listen to the signs and instinct, it needs to be based from that place of safety and security, that inner knowing that we can trust in that person or the relationships we have with all the people in our lives. The levels of trust will change, we will trust the people close to us and those we have developed trust over years much more than the we trust the people who we have just met, trust is something that grows over time. If we lack trust in our health, then it can be very easy to start over thinking the tiniest thing that we feel and then start blowing it all out of proportion. People who have lot trust in their own health are hyper vigilant to how they feel and struggle to see the true perfective in what is happening in their own bodies. They will also find that they won’t trust the doctors, tests, experts and specialists which keep them searching again and again for an unanswerable solution. None of us know how may moments we have left in our lives, we don’t come with a book that tells us how our lives will be lived and what we will have to face along the way. If we are living without personal trust in our health, we have to accept there isn’t an answer for this, accept that we just have to trust that we will be ok, only then we will stop wasting our lives life with fears and insecurities. This is just one example of trust issues but we can lack trust in our driving abilities, our thoughts, the world, other people, intimate relationships and in fact in nearly everything we do.
As children, we hopefully learn the lessons that people close to us are reliable, can be trusted, and will take care of us no matter what. We learn that if we need help that people will help us, and that you can turn to someone you trust for support, our caregivers will be there for us and happy to give us the help we need. The ability to recognise that we will be comforted and relieved by the support your given will then allow us to have the ability to develop trust. But what if as children we didn’t learn this, what if we were let down by the people closest to us? If we can’t trust them, how on earth can we trust a stranger? We would then in contrast, become anxiously attached, those exposed to a mother or caregiver who is inconsistent, sometimes a source of comfort and sometimes absent. If we can’t fully rely on them then it means we don’t trust them to be present, we then become anxious about relying on them. With this very difficult mental and emotional view of the world, our expectations about human interaction will not be based on a firm foundation at all, but will be formed on insecurity and fear. The human capacity for trust and trusting isn’t formed on an equal basis, some people are able to trust more easily than others and are, in fact, better at being trustworthy and judging trustworthiness too. If we haven’t seen what true trust is as a child or it has in some way been shattered due to a life experience or trauma our ability to recognise how to trust ourselves and others with be difficult too. The majority of animals and that includes us, need to develop attachments to our caregivers as children, whether it’s secure or insecure. We have to understand that we are so vulnerable as children we have to hold onto something even if it is bad. The insecure attachments will make us anxious, fearful and often avoidant, thus determines how trusting we are, because these early attachments provide the working model of how we see the world and the people in it.
If our lives have been abusive we may have become an avoidantly attached individual, someone who has been neglected, rejected or even abused, they just avoid close contact. They will not feel able to rely on anyone for help because they don’t trust at all, and they do what they can to remain autonomous. Keep in mind that these aren’t a function of a conscious process, as trust or lack of it isn’t produced through rational thought processes. These are processed according to our internal view of the world, we may not even know we follow this and just live in a state of denial unless we have been in therapy or have come to a real understanding of how our childhood experiences have affected us. Even so, in the moment, we may not recognise the patterns we just live in denial of why we do this and we just continue to live by them, which of course impacts our ability to live a full life.
Next week we will look at this is more details as we work on more personal relationships and how trust impacts how we form these and how they function.
Thanks for dropping by, Sara x