When you've been hurt or let down by others, it can be difficult to trust again. But being able to trust – and being a trustworthy person – is fundamental to building positive relationships with others. After all, who wants to live in constant fear and suspicion? But how can you train yourself to be more trusting?
Why Trust Matters
We're social creatures. And we depend on each other to reach outcomes and live the life we desire. Trust plays a big part in that process – I'll help you, you'll help me.
But experts say trust is also tied up with interdependence – when we rely on others, we expose ourselves to the risk of being let down. And when we're let down, we may find ourselves clinging to those bad feelings. When we prolong our hurt, anxiety and fears, we make it harder for ourselves to open up and trust again.
By developing trust, we become trustworthy. We're able to bond better with others, develop deeper relationships, influence those in our circles, and help build a close-knit community.
So what are some ways to become more trusting?
Meditation and Trust
Think back to when you last felt let down. Perhaps a friend cancelled plans with you or someone told you a lie. How did you feel – angry, frustrated, depressed, confused?
It's OK to have those feelings. But the trick to trusting again is letting those thoughts float away. The more you hold on to those feelings, the more suffering you bring into your sphere.
Meditation teaches us that feelings and thoughts come and go. We have good times and bad times. People treat us well and sometimes not so well. But whatever is happening in this moment, it will change. It will fade away, and be replaced by new experiences and feelings.
When you meditate, your awareness increases. So the next time you feel let down, you'll be in a better place to understand why it happened and what lesson you can take away from the experience. Trust that you can control how you feel about a person, situation or outcome. Trust that you have the strength to move through any challenge in your life.
Learning how to trust is also about learning to be vulnerable. When you've been betrayed, it may be difficult to truly express your feelings to a loved one. But practising honesty and open communication is the only way to truly move on from past hurts.
Begin small. Perhaps share a small secret with your partner, or tell a friend how you feel about a particular issue. As you build confidence, you'll build trust and find it easier to share your thoughts and feelings with those around you.Originally published on Mar 28, 2014