Relationship and Trust
We so easily forget the time and investment we make before we gave ourselves to a new relationship. We forget the testing, the wondering, and the checking out. We forget the fear we experienced when we first met someone we might have wanted to trust enough to develop an intimate relationship with. We often forget just how vulnerable we were before we decided to make that leap of faith. We also forget the needs we had, needs that may have drawn us to that person, and still do. Quite often we forget the person who we were when we first entered the relationship. Now, 6 months or 6 years later, we are no longer that person. As time passes and our lives change so do we.
So what is all that about. We tend to forget that relationships are built on trust and that it didn’t exist at the beginning. What were our fears? Well firstly, it was probably about safety, and vulnerability. Will I be rejected, will I be criticized or humiliated in a vulnerable state. Starting out we want to be safe. Our needs do change and evolve, but some core needs become even more urgent as time progresses and things change. We often think that we are always the same person. We can forget that the values we once prioritized change, and with that our personal commitment to what is important in life. Its not that things go wrong its just that our values and priorities change, and we find ourselves committed to different values and having different needs.
Commitment means “to do”.
Relationship is about trust but it is also about commitment. Relationships can sometimes fail at the start because; one person feels that lack of commitment in the relationship. Commitment means, “to do”. Sometimes a young relationship can falter because the lack of commitment looks like something we value is not being done, or is not being followed up on. In a more mature relationship our core values can change and so our commitment to what we value changes. Couples can find themselves committed to different things without ever having shared, either their values or how they have changed
Some tips to build Trust and Commitment
- Do you know what is expected in terms of trust, and how the other person perceives expressed behaviors, feelings, emotions, attitudes etc as demonstrating trust in the relationship.
- Do you know what the relationship is about and where it is going, particularly in terms of love, finance, sexual intimacy, children, your shared commitments, your shared values.
- Do you make a regular time and space to listen and share your dreams, fears and joys.
- Touch is a powerful thing. Do you take five seconds just to touch his cheek, to touch her arm, to look into your partner’s eyes?
- Do you recognize and celebrate your joint achievements, and what makes you the unique couple that you are.
- Do you support and celebrate each other’s personal and emotional growth, or do you fear it, resent it, or become jealous of it.
- Can you recognize your resentments and fears? Do you have the courage to face your vulnerability to share them with your partner?
- Are you comfortable with each other’s vulnerability, can you recognize it, tolerate it, and hold it. Are you comfortable with your own vulnerability?
- Do you take time to reflect on or express the gratitude you feel towards your partner for the good things they bring into your life?