(By Douglas Jones:    Leadership & People Skills Trainer:     506-386-5868)


  You have all heard the saying: “Trust must be earned.”

  What this really means is that “YOU ARE BEING WATCHED”.


Your every Word, Emotion, Action and Behaviour is being evaluated by someone.

They will evaluate you according to their own “Principles, Standards, Values and Beliefs” not yours. They will assess you in every way possible. Every assessment of you will add to your Trustworthiness, until it doesn’t “add” but then you are assessed in a negative way.

When people don’t know you, things are fairly simple. You are a question mark in their minds until they can observe “your” words and actions.

“When you consistently do what you say you are going to do”, then you earn their trust.

“When you admit that you don’t know but will find out and get back to them and then you do get back to them”, then you earn their trust.

“When you admit your mistakes and genuinely try to fix them”, then you earn their trust.

But, the first time you don’t live up to any of these expectations, you will lose it all.


Trust seems to be an “all or nothing” thing. People either trust you or they don’t. It is a constant struggle to just gain and maintain other people’s trust. It is almost impossible to regain trust once it is lost.

This is where I learned to return phone calls, be careful about what I promised to do, and make my commitment to others a top priority.

All you have in this world is the relationships that you build with the people around you.

Trust is a great motivator. If you “trust” someone, typically you would do almost anything for them and you know that they would probably do the same for you. You have a feeling of being secure in the relationship you have with them. You may know in your heart that they would never intentionally harm you. Over time, circumstances around you may change, but “Trust” is what will help you through the bad time as well as the good. The interesting thing about “trust” is that it also seems like a forever thing.

Think about a person that you don’t “trust”. Is your relationship with them great, just so-so or are you skeptical of every moment you have to spend with them?

If you do not “trust” a person, then typically you will question every behaviour (thoughts, feelings and actions) that person uses. You will be skeptical of their motives, intentions and the quality of what they produce. Your major focus will be on “what that person is doing wrong now” or “how will they hurt me this time”?   What is interesting about not trusting a person is that there is almost nothing you like or trust about that person ever again.

Trust” is usually looked upon as an “All or Nothing” thing. Once you have lost trust in a person, it is almost impossible for them to regain “YOUR” trust.

Trust” is lost when one person makes a mistake that hurts someone else. We are all human and we all make mistakes. We will make more mistakes in the future, guaranteed.

Trust” is simple, either you do or you don’t. If you do trust, there is a bucket of emotions that support that feeling. If you don’t trust, there is a different bucket of emotions that support that feeling too.

We change our minds many times every day. You can change your mind about “trust” in an instant too. What is past is past. What is difficult is forgiveness. It is not about forgiving that other person for making a mistake, it is about forgiving yourself for wanting to hold a grudge against them.

We can’t forget about the things that happened in the past but we can learn from them. There are no guarantees that those same mistakes won’t be made again, but it is your choice as to whether you believe that the person will try not to make them again.

Trust” is a choice. It is simple but it is not easy. The difficulty is that it is very easy to switch from “trusting” to “not trusting”, but it is almost impossible to switch back to “trusting” once you decide not to “trust” a person.

If you choose to NOT trust, then you may have to live with doubt, anger, frustration and worry.   Ultimately this will affect your attitude and outlook on life. You may have heard of the term “worried sick”. Living in a constant negative state of mind can and will make you sick.

If you choose to “trust”, then the opposite of “worried sick” becomes true. Less stress and anxiety leads to more satisfaction and happiness.

If “trust” is a choice, then you may want to ask yourself, “Do I want to live my life waiting for a person to prove that I can trust them?” or “Do I want to live my life trusting people until they give me a reason not to?” With the former, you will live in fear and trepidation, with the latter, you will live anticipation and harmony. Which will it be for you?

People can tell whether you “trust” them or not.

Choosing to “
trust” is how you “Empower” the people around you.

            Call Douglas Jones at 506-386-5868

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