I saw an episode of Dr. Phil years ago where one of the daughters had a lot of emotional and drug issues, and her sister was having a hard time learning to trust her again after she had been in and out of rehab and had hurt her family countless times.
What Dr. Phil said about trust really made me think about it in a different way. How much we trust another person is really a function of how much we trust ourselves to be strong enough to deal with their imperfections. It can really hurt if someone takes advantage of your trust, but it will happen, and you will heal. What’s worse is if we close ourselves off to keep from getting hurt, because we risk building meaningful relationships. It’s not easy to be vulnerable, and I think it’s natural to want to protect your heart from disappointment. But many times, the chance that you could be hurt is not worth the sacrifices you make by withholding your trust.
Game Plan: Do you feel like you are protecting yourself and keeping your guard up around someone (or everyone)? Every situation is different and sometimes people give us many reasons to want to withhold our trust, but think about what’s worth more to you. It’s not an all or nothing thing – you don’t have to give complete trust to another person right away, just try opening your heart a little bit more and realizing that you are strong enough to deal with whatever fallout may come if they let you down.