Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Trust Dividend

Based on past experiences, trust is difficult to give and to receive. But knowing that integrity and reputation can make or break a business deal or a relationship, how do you establish trust? Can it be learned and practiced? Thinking about trusting and being trusted, I read the book "The Speed of Trust," and am taking a webinar based on the book.

With the book set in the business world, I started thinking about benefits and taxes that come with trust. Things, processes, could be improved with an increased level of trust. There are benefits that come when trust is given. Paying "taxes" because of a lack of trust, can cost an individual dearly. When trust goes down, speed/productivity goes down and the cost goes up. It seems that the converse is true as well.

Have you even had a situation when someone believed in you when no one else did? How did you react? Did you rise to the challenge or shun the responsibility that comes with some one's trust?

When I was 8 my parents split up. I moved to a new neighborhood, got a new school, had to make all new friends and to top if all off went started going to a new church. I didn't trust anyone. People leave. Things change. There was no loyalty. No honesty.

By the school photos hung down the hallway at my moms house, you could tell exactly what year the divorce happened. I gained 30 pounds that year - I still have it to this day. Kids are mean and so I was mean right back. What did I have to lose? Everything was different anyway.

Then about my 8th or 9th grade year, one of the "cool" girls at church started to talk to me more and wanted to know what I thought. She started to call my house and invite me to do things. She was older and she offered to drive me places - hang out with me.

Because she trusted me -believed in me - my confidence swelled. She thought I was funny, special, worth it - so I was. Her trust in me paid dividends that I am still reaping the benefits of today.

I chose not to sell myself short. I went for things I wanted - like yearbook editor, a job at the mall, a date with "him." And I didn't sell myself short in relationships either. I knew that I didn't have to stand for being mistreated. I had people how wanted to be around me, I didn't have to put up with people that acted like they didn't. I was able to give and get respect.

Our friendship, rooted in Christ and a mutual trust, has remained a guiding force for me all these years. Reconnecting with her reminds me of who I want to be, how I want others to see me, why I do the things that I do.

What a treasured gift - trust

"I bring you the gift of these four words: I believe in you."
—Blaise Pascal, French physicist and mathematician
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