Trust is tough. Once broken, trust takes a lot of time and even more effort to rebuild.
I think people in general are conditioned to trust. We kind of have to be. You start life as a helpless infant, unable to take care of your own basic needs. You trust that your parents or guardians will make sure you are clean, fed and warm. And as you grow, you continue to trust them to teach you and help you mature.
But as you grow and your social circle widens, new people enter your life. And you start out trusting them, until they do something to break that trust. When it’s just little white lies, it can take time to chip away at the trust. Or maybe you catch them in a big, life-alternate lie, which blows up the trust like Hiroshima.
Either way, to try and rebuild that trust at least three times as long as it did to lose it. And both parties have to want to rebuild. The offending party needs to settle in with a great deal of commitment and patience. But the offended party often has the harder job. He or she needs to find a little trust to build on and they have to consciously tamp down the inclination to question every single thing. They have to make a commitment and have a little faith, which can be very difficult, in fact near impossible, when your trust has been shaken.
We see broken trust every day. In the face of an abused child, the broken hearted, even in the American people when politicians are caught in lies. The road back in all those situations is long, often made worse by the lack of a true apology. The recent scandal with L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling is a great example. In his apology for his racist remarks, he made more racist remarks and broke trust even further.
It all starts with accepting responsibility for a mistake, openly and honestly. And apologizing…sincerely.
It’s the only way to go…trust me.