By Julie Sharp | November 22nd, 2017
It can’t be overstated that the key to good relationships, be they between intimate partners or even workmates is not found in blaming the other, but in looking towards oneself, the only place one may truly have control.
So while many folks say they can’t trust their partner, the real issue is, “Am I trustworthy?”
Trustworthiness is important because it forms the glue on which good relationships are built. In easy to understand terms, trustworthiness can be described as not only talking the talk, but walking the talk.
In other words, trustworthiness is about your own behavior being consistent with the values you espouse and being a person who can be counted on to do as they say.
If trust has been broken, then the challenge is developing your perceived trustworthiness. We develop our trustworthiness through commitment, transparency and authenticity: I do as I say; I am open about how I do it; I am clear as to any feelings I may have about what is the issue.
Big issues that undermine one’s trustworthiness in intimate relationships include money and intimacy. If you are spending secretly or if you are stepping out on your partner, you undermine your own trustworthiness. The way back includes:
- Owning your transgressions openly;
- Showing behavior that accounts for change (access to credit card information or access to computer or phone).
- Being clear about feelings that lead to untrustworthy behavior;
- Being clear on your own needs and wants and conveying them to your partner.
- Stating openly your desire to become trustworthy;
- Taking responsibility for behavior;
- Circling back to transparency by being open and providing access to information that demonstrates the commitment to change.
Taking responsibility for a breach of trust can be scary. As much as a framework for developing trustworthiness can be outlined many people benefit from support to make it happen. Therein lays the benefit of counseling. Counseling can provide the support and guidance to regain one’s trustworthiness to improve relationships. If your relationships are important to you, consider counseling as a support to help you regain your trustworthiness.