Sometimes in life, it’s necessary to fall on your sword for something you believe in.
We learn about what’s important to our tribe through years of words, signals, nudges, smacks, and other experiences. From these important lessons, we develop our values and our principles. Some will develop from an earlier age than others, while others will strengthen over time.
Of course, we must be careful to also allow space for values and principles to change, if necessary.
There are certain areas of your life where you try never to compromise on your principles. Maybe you believe your word is your bond. You do everything in your power to hold to that principle. Over time, you’re known as someone whose word can be trusted. Say you believe marriage is sacred as a bond between two people and should never be broken. You’ll do everything possible to stay true to your marriage.
Trusting a person from the outset opens the door for them to be their authentic self.
When you’re on your guard and present yourself at arms-length, it stifles openness. To create the necessary space for honest dialogue and a relationship of mutual respect to develop, you need trust between both parties. Often, we feel like we should hold back on fully trusting and only offer a sliver of trust in case we get hurt.
If you’ve ever been on the receiving end of someone who’s not being open with you, you’ll know it feels crappy. Our senses can pick up when we’re mistrusted. It creates tension and anxiety for fear of making a mistake. Creativity and innovation get throttled while mediocrity sets in. Our response is to play by the rules and be obedient.
You’re not going to get the best out of someone if you don’t trust them.
Trusting from the outset means we’re vulnerable to hurt. That vulnerability creates a safe space for the other person to respond in kind. When good people feel that safety, they don’t abuse the kindness, they offer the same respect to you. Will you ever be hurt? Of course, people will let you down. But the few that do, don’t make it worthwhile to treat everyone else with mistrust.
Every person deserves a chance to reveal their deeper character. We all have a story to tell and it’s completely different to anyone else. I’ve gone through my life trying to leave enough space for anyone I meet to be their true self. I’ll keep trusting you even if you’ve let me down a few times. Everyone deserves a second chance. And a third. And more.
Leaving the space for someone to be trusted, even if they’ve shown otherwise, allows them the chance — someday — to take up the offer. Understand, the hurt you’ll feel is far less than how great they’ll feel when they realise you’ve trusted them all along.
There are a handful of principles I’ll fall on my sword for, trusting everyone is one.
Have an awesome weekend and please be generous! 😄
As always, thanks for reading 🙏