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  • Writer's pictureShandy Welch

The Foundation of TRUST

(We raised Pico from 3 days old and this was the moment she introduced us to her babies- TRUST is a beautiful thing!)

“Trust is choosing to make something important to you, vulnerable to the actions of someone else.”

-Charles Feldman

We talk about trust and throw the word around easily, but what does it really mean? And, if you don't think you have it with others, why not?

Brene Brown writes and speaks about the Anatomy of Trust and the key elements required to gain and retain the trust of others.

Unfortunately it doesn’t take a lot to lose the trust of others and it is a lot of work to gain it. Consistency over time is critical. Be present, be aware, and take this seriously. Trust is the foundation of all relationships and teams. Share this with others and begin the conversation.

“When we trust, we are braving a connection with someone”

-Brene Brown

Brene created this acronym to highlight the fundamental elements required for trust, let's break it down...

B- Boundaries: “There is not trust without boundaries” Mutual respect allows for and appreciates boundaries. Know your limits, respect others, and have the courage to stand in your conviction. Weak and unclear boundaries equates to lower confidence and avoidance.

R- Reliability: We show others they can trust us if we do what we say we are going to do- consistently. There is no faster way to lose the trust of another than not showing up, not following through, or not staying true to your word. To do this well you need to prioritize and be impeccable with your word. We need not always say what the other wants to hear. Rather, respond with courage acting from a place of awareness, connection, and intention.

A- Accountability: Stand behind your words with actions and integrity. Apologize for mistakes and own your part of success or failure. Allow others grace when they make a mistake and apologize.

V- Vault: Your word is sacred and what you hear in confidence stays with you. Additionally, if you break that confidence and discuss it with someone else, you have made it perfectly clear to them that your word is not sacred. You have now lost the trust of two people.

I- Integrity: Acting from a place of courageous morality and impeccable principle. Doing the right thing when nobody's watching because you can’t expect from others what you don’t do yourself. Practicing and weaving your values into all you do and say. Other people are watching and taking note. Are you leading by example at all times?

N- Non-judgement: Approaching others and yourself with compassion and empathy. To be curious and open without preconceived ideas or judgement. Not assigning value on another's vulnerability but rather staying open for the connection between you.

G- Generosity: You give the gift of positive assumption towards another, you assume the best because you trust them and know their integrity and core values… even if it is not comfortable or clear. It is standing in the belief that the other person did their best and is worthy of your trust.

My father taught me there are two ways people trust: some immediately trust another until they loose their trust and others don’t trust anyone until the other earns it… which one are you?

Trust is a choice, a choice to let others in and believe in their potential and being willing to risk vulnerability if proven wrong. Choosing to live in a place of hope and positively.

I would argue, words are cheap in this situation, saying “trust me” gets you nowhere. Show me I can trust you, Show me you are in this for the long haul. Show me with your words, your actions, your forgiveness, and your vulnerability. Let’s stand beside each other and take turns leaning in and holding each other up.

On a broader scope, Freakanomics, had a great episode titled “Trust Me”, exploring how trust impacts societies and culture. Come to find out, trusting societies are both wealthier and healthier. So, why not work on trust?!

My Challenge To You:

  • Critically look at the algorithm B.R.A.V.I.N.G., what resonates and what are you needing more focus and attention on? Can you commit to making one consistent change to improve trust?

  • Does your team fundamentally trust each other... really? How do you know this? What about sharing this email with your team and asking for an honest reflective dialogue?

  • Remember, it takes bravery to ask for trust, I believe in you!

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