How To Build or Rebuild Trust (in 14 Steps)

How To Build or Rebuild Trust (in 14 Steps)

Trust can take a lifetime to build and only a second to lose. We’ve seen these words play out in the lives of countless public figures, among our friends & family, and in our own personal life.

As a part of my coaching & matchmaking intake process, I conduct a “360 analysis” which includes interviews with my clients’ past spouses, dates, and friends. In nearly 100% of the cases, “loss of trust” was reported as an ingredient in the demise of a past relationship. I often say that all relationships (personal, professional, and romantic) begin and end with trust.

So with trust being such an integral part of our relationships, knowing how to manage it is imperative. In today’s post I focus on how to build trust or what to do when trust is lost AND you want to regain it. Here are 14 ways to build or rebuild trust:

1) Stop Lying – When we tell the truth, even when it isn’t pleasant, we become much more trustworthy. Becoming known as a person who doesn’t lie, even in tough times or moments of significant pressure, shows people your moral strength. Being appreciated for honesty sustains trustworthiness.

2) Set Your Expectations – Studies show the average person tells 4 lies per day. People are human, frail, and sinful. The key is to trust people as who they are rather than the person we want them to be.

3) Do What You Say You’re Going To Do – The foundation of trust typically doesn’t break suddenly, it erodes over time. Keep your eye on the small things. Canceling or failing to follow through on simple tasks will create hairline fractures in your trustworthiness. Enough of those, and the foundation will crumble.

4) Be A Better Communicator – This is the single most important part of relationship management. There are many ways to grow your skills in this area but start with being a better listener (and the most effective listeners use their eyes). Remember that 93% of communication is non-verbal.

5) Express Your Needs Clearly – Value your needs enough to convey them. It’s unfair and unhealthy to exist in a relationship where your partner or friends must guess about your needs.

6) Be Positive – This goes hand in hand with smiling. We naturally trust people we perceive to be nice. Why do you think salespeople grin so much? I once heard a researcher say when it comes to trust we believe 99% of what we see and 1% of what we hear .

7) Embrace Shared, Rather Than Personal Goals – Trust comes when we feel our partner (or team) is pulling together to accomplish a shared vision, rather than a personal agenda. This is the essence of teamwork. When a team really works, the players trust one another. As my wife always says “it takes teamwork to make the dream work.

8) Don’t Allow Issues To Go Unresolved – Allowing any issue, no matter how small, to go unaddressed manifests into larger issues. Putting a problem off for later discussion or dismissing it with hopes of it being forgotten is the worst conflict resolution strategy. If you have an issue, address it, even if only to acknowledge it. When you start talking about a problem, you’re half way to resolving the problem.

9) Hold To Your Highest Moral Standard – This is very important in romantic relationships or when leading a team. It’s critical for people to feel confident that you will not falter or betray them. When your ability to be true or dedicated isn’t questioned, being trusted becomes a stronger consideration.

10) Volunteer Information – I fall victim to this often. I’ll come back from hanging out with the fellas and my wife will ask how it went and I’ll say “it was cool.” No bueno! Why? Because she wants to know more than that. When an opportunity to be vague arises, don’t take it. Tell people things they need or want to know. If you begin to provide reliable information they will trust you.

11) Be Consistent – This is a character trait very easily determined. It underscores your reliability and predictability. Someone with consistent character is thought to have good judgement in handling situations.

12) Treat People Fairly & Equally – Plain and simple, apply the rule: “Treat others as you would like to be treated.” When you do that, not only are you typically reciprocated but you also exude the character of someone who is trustworthy.

13) Be A Confidant – Don’t be a gossip. Enough said. You can only be trusted when people know you to be discreet with secrets.

14) Fight Fair – Despite what many say, fighting is a part of any good relationship. The problem is not that couples fight, but how they fight. If you fight unfairly, then you destroy trust. If you fight fairly, you build trust. A fair fight means that you never resort to name calling or putdowns, keep the discussion in the present, don’t use phrases that are absolutes (such as “you never” or “you always”), don’t bring the other person’s family into the issue to support your case or to attack your spouse.

To discover more about what I’ve learned about trust in my marriage, read this short post.

 

 

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About Paul C. Brunson
Mentor, Entrepreneur, & Television Host. My goal is to help you live your best life; in love and professionally. I’m the world’s most influential matchmaker, founded and exited three businesses, host two television shows, spent nearly a decade working directly for a billionaire, and share my experiences by mentoring and coaching thousands of people.
19 comments
Falisha Kinsey
Falisha Kinsey

Yes it easy to trust but when we lose trust it's harder than ever to rebuild.....I slowly rebuild my trust.....

Chris Zwiener
Chris Zwiener

Excellent. Learning to trust anyone ever again is going to be my biggest hurdle.

Ms Tebby
Ms Tebby

This is so me.. I possess all these good values but I find people taking advantage of me Paul, they will only remember I exist when they "need me", they know they can count on me coz I'm trustworthy for their convenience. Its not a good place to be in.

LovelyLady34
LovelyLady34

This is so good . My gosh I really needed that to reevaluate and transition. Thank you so much you don't know how much this help when moving forward. Thank you

Rhonda Orick
Rhonda Orick

I've always thought without trust, there is truly no real relationship. I've tried to tell three of my five brothers this. They used to be obsessed with things like, timing their wife's grocery store trips, one use to come to my home insisting on seeing my phone bill. I asked him why, lol. He wanted to check if his wife had made phone calls when she would come over with her kids to visit while he was at work. I gave it to him, he reached in his wallet and pulled out a piece of paper. I said, "What's that?" He kept track on paper the exact days she had came over. I've been in a relationship that I knew he was cheating on me. I was young and trusting, 17 years old. If you don't have trust in each other, I feel you really don't have a relationship...more like living a lie or fantasy life. Communication is the major key. <3

Hopeful
Hopeful

My boyfriend and I were just trying to figure out how to rebuild trust and I saw this on Twitter. Thank you. These are great tips. Fingers crossed this helps.

Paul Carrick Brunson
Paul Carrick Brunson

So glad this post got to you at the right time! I wish you and your boyfriend the best.

TheBlackTinaFey
TheBlackTinaFey

For years I thought trust was limited to the area of fidelity in relationships. Not so. Most recently, I found myself constantly requesting #3, #4, #8, and #11 stating their importance as foundation principles for any relationship. I feel like this article is confirmation of why we continued having challenges in this area. Thank you so much for this, Paul.

serenausery
serenausery

But how can you rebuild trust again in a relationship what are some of the thing you can do

Breffni
Breffni

this is so helpful. thank you.

BarbaraKimmel
BarbaraKimmel

Thanks Paul. Can you imagine how different the world would be if everyone read this list and accepted even one of the suggestions listed? I particularly like, "Do what you say you are going to do." So often trust is lost in both personal and business relationship based on lack of accountability. Barbara Kimmel, Executive Director Trust Across America - Trust Around the World http://www.trustacrossamerica.com

Paul Carrick Brunson
Paul Carrick Brunson

Thanks for reading the post Barbara! I'm going to visit your site, as well.