When it comes to trusting people, many of us find it difficult to do so. But, why is that? Maybe “I can’t trust anyone” really means “I can’t trust myself.”
By: Jason Suerte Felipe
We all know the famous saying “the foundation of any relationship is trust.” Trust can either progress our relationships or hold them back. We want to able to trust our friends, family and romantic partners and receive the same level of respect and trust. But what if we have convinced ourselves that people can’t be trusted?
Well, simply put, we can’t trust people without having trust in ourselves. Like the trust within our relationships, the trust we have for ourselves can be broken. And the pain and suffering that we may have experienced can be projected onto our relationships.
According to Psychology Today, “projection is the unconscious act of attributing something inside ourselves to someone else. Most often, the thing we are projecting is an unwanted emotion or characteristic. So by labeling others as unwanted, out to get you, or insecure, you’re able to avoid feeling those emotions for yourself .”
For example, say you are still together with someone who has cheated. Said partner may get anxious or needy or not trust you when you are out with friends because they are afraid you are doing what they did to you. They are projecting their behaviors and lack of trust in themselves. They can’t trust themselves not to make the same mistake again, so they lose their ability to trust anyone else.
“Identifying with the projections of others means losing your ability to trust your own perceptions, views, thoughts, and feelings. You lack the ability to understand your inner world. A hallmark of being able to trust one’s self is to form effective boundaries in the presence of projections that are hurled at you.”
Of course this can cause a huge problem in your relationships. Maybe by creating blame or never taking fault in your own actions. Thus, pushing away the relationships you’ve once had.
There is a danger in being rejected by your inner thoughts. You’re engraving these negative thoughts and behaviors and forcing them onto someone else because rather than accepting them, you deny them. And when a relationship breaks off, rather than accepting the underlying problem, you continue to blame others.
Learning to trust ourselves is an ongoing process. Without trusting ourselves, how do we expect to trust others and build lifelong, meaningful relationships. You need to take a step back and really take some time understanding your inner emotions and behaviors to help you identify what the issue is and what you can do to stop it.
Here Are a Few Thing You Can Do To Help Restore Trust
Recognize Your Bad Behaviors. Do not just use your flaws and bad behaviors as excuses for failed relationships. Recognize them and accept that you are in control and only you have the power to stop these bad behaviors.
Recognize Your Projections. Do not project your bad behaviors onto your loved ones. You may lash out and project onto others, but it’s important to take a step back and see where it may be stemming from.
Let It Go. Leave the past in the past. Do not dwell on the wrongdoings of past relationships and don’t let those bad experiences get in the way of you having a healthy relationship.
Can it be hard for us to accept our flaws? Absolutely. But we need to learn to Accept and Act. Accept when we are doing wrong, and act on how we can change.
You are capable of having meaningful relationships. Strip away the walls and emotion, and figure out how you can have a stronger and healthier relationship with yourself and others.
Do you struggle with trust? How do you build trust in yourself and others? Share with us in the comments!
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