It’s not uncommon to assume some level of trust in a new relationship but sometimes that trust is misplaced or misunderstood. The question isn’t should you trust; it’s how do you build trust so your relationship can grow and thrive?
Before you can build trust, you have to understand what it means to you and your partner. Clearly communicating your expectations and understanding what your partner needs is the foundation for building a long-lasting relationship.
The problem is we tend to shy away from these conversations when a relationship is new for fear of scaring the other person away. And by not having the conversation, assumptions are made which can lead to disagreements and even betrayal down the road.
Take the time to understand what your partner is looking for in a relationship and make sure your needs are expressed. When you begin there, building trust becomes much easier. To help you take the next steps…
HERE ARE 10 WAYS TO BUILD TRUST IN A RELATIONSHIP:
1. EARN IT
Don’t assume trust exists and always be working to earn it. When we stop taking trust for granted and make it a priority, we will be conscious of our actions and the perceptions of those actions to our partner.
2. KEEP YOUR PROMISES
It makes sense that we want to keep promises we make to our partner, but often the little things get overlooked. Make keeping your promises about little things as important as keeping your promises about the big things. Call when you are late, remember to pick up that item from the grocery store and remember to pay the bills on time. While these things may seem small, they go a long way towards building trust.
3. KEEP SECRETS
Do not keep secrets from each other, instead keep them for each other. Keep your personal conversations at home. It is only right to talk about something once you hear your partner bring the subject up in a conversation. Also realize, he might share information only with certain people. It’s his story, so let him tell it and follow his lead.
4. COMMUNICATE OPENLY AND IN PERSON
Make it a rule that most communication, especially important subject matter, must happen in person. The true meaning of a message can get lost via text, email and sometimes even on the phone. Make sure you are both heard and understood by talking face to face.
5. DON’T JUDGE
You might not understand why something is important to your partner, but the fact that it is important is all that matters. Before you can trust, you must respect each other and your differences without judgment.
6. BECOME VULNERABLE
Be real with your partner and that means sharing things that you often keep hidden. The ultimate sign of trust is living your truth and by doing so your partner will be more comfortable living theirs.
7. BE FORGIVING
Trusting doesn’t mean mistakes won’t happen and when they do be forgiving. Holding on to past transgressions will only erode the trust in the relationship. We should feel the ability to make mistakes and so should our partners, without it being a constant source of contention. Letting go of the hurt, accepting the apology and moving on builds a trust based on truth and love.
8. WORK ON YOUR PERSONAL GROWTH
We are better people and better in our relationships when we take the time to work on our personal growth. It’s important in any relationship for the people in it to grow as a couple and as individuals. It’s a focus on our personal growth that keeps the relationship solid and the trust in each other growing.
9. BE SUPPORTIVE
It is important in any relationship to be supportive of the other person. It is even more important to show that support when we are in a stage of building trust. If one person in the relationship doesn’t feel that they can take a risk, make mistakes or try new things without support, the relationship will falter. On the other hand, being supportive in good times and bad opens us up to living our truth knowing someone has our back.
10. DISAGREE IN PRIVATE
A public forum is never a place to voice a disagreement. If what your partner is saying doesn’t sit well with you, discuss it at home. Often disagreeing in front of other people can shame or humiliate the other person. This kind of behavior will damage your lines of communication and your trust factor. Waiting until you get home offers the benefit of formulating your thoughts in a respectful way to encourage an honest and open discussion.
Building trust isn’t hard when you approach your relationship with respect and understanding. The basic principle of trust is easy: do what you say you are going to do. Stay true to that and a trusting relationship will naturally begin to form.