If you have walked the path of healer, guide, or teacher, you likely know that it is full of misunderstandings. This is partly because so much is not known by one or both parties about what healing really entails for the individual. There is an element that lives in mystery, out of our understanding and control. And it is partly because you can’t lead transformation from inside the crowd. Healing often requires a different orientation to the problem -an outside perspective that acts as a catalyst for the new.
And, you can’t expect to be understood if you are bringing something new. Understanding comes when we have spent some time and become more accustomed to what is. The new brings up an entirely different experience.
But of course, I want to be understood. I think that most people do; for me, it was important to the degree that it sometimes got in my way. I learned as a child to be acutely attuned to the perceptions of others and, in many ways, to prioritize their perceptions over my own. By doing this, I learned to understand the experiences of others. And, my understanding brought compassion and empathy to my encounters. However, these early experiences also brought persistent fear and self-doubt in the face of other people’s opinions.
The degree to which I am caught in these others’ opinions, transient emotions, or storylines about me affects my availability in doing the work that I love. My job is to be a conduit for what is needed. When my ego dominates and I get caught in others’ views of me, I am limited in my capacity.
To stay the course and do the work I am here to do, I believe I must continually engage in the practice of aligning with source. As I strengthen this alignment, I am able to hold the truth of the moment more completely and therefore do my work more thoroughly. My personal wounds still ache when poked, but this pain does not hold the same power as it once did. The truth of the alignment with source is irrefutable. Because of this, it is easier to stay open and clear, and to continue the work.
The power and resonance of this alignment allows me to hold the thoughts, feelings, and perceptions of others in perspective and in the proper relationship, eliminating many problems. So, I pay less attention to why I get caught in a projection of another person and more attention to strengthening my alignment. I put less time into understanding the mechanics of my pain and more time building my resiliency and connection to source.
Whether you are the person who has been hurt or you are the person who has broken trust, you very likely will want to do some repair work. Here are fourteen things that you can do to help rebuild trust with another person once it has been broken.
01 Take Responsibility: Regardless of which role you played in the situation, you are responsible for your own contributions to what has occurred. Take some time to be clear about what you did and what you did not do that may have led to a situation where trust was broken.
02 Show Empathy: When we have hurt someone, it helps for them to see that we understand the pain that they are going through. When we have been hurt, some of us will expect ourselves to get over it quickly and others will tend to hold onto the pain. Either way, empathizing with our own experience is helpful to our process of healing. It is also helpful to show empathy when possible to the person that hurt us. This person usually hurt us because of his or her own pain.
03 Keep Promises & Agreements: If you have betrayed someone’s trust, their whole system is on red alert. More than likely they expect you to continue to hurt them. By only making promises and agreements you can keep – as well as making sure to keep them – you can start to rebuild trust.
04 Be Authentic: People can spot a phony, (and even if they go along, they do not really trust them). So if you have hurt someone, being real is the best way to rebuild trust. If you were the person hurt, being authentic might mean that you are truthful about your emotions and where you are in your healing process.
05 Expect & Support Emotional Reactions: When there has been a breach of trust, everyone wants it to go away. But, expecting it to be cleared with an, “I’m sorry,” is often overly optimistic. Emotions will come and go. The more that you can support the emotional healing of yourself, or the person you hurt, the more likely you are to reestablish trust.
06 Sincerely Apologize: Perhaps, this should be number one. Offering an apology is the first thing that you can do to begin the healing after trust has been broken. Just lip service will not do – you will need to understand how you hurt the other person and truly feel remorse for your actions.
07 Accept & Admit Your Faults: Regardless of which side of the coin you fall on, you have flaws. These flaws, while understandable, likely contributed to the situation at hand. Stating your flaws and saying what you are going to do differently is helpful in regaining trust.
08 Keep Your Head on Your Shoulders: Assess the situation at hand. If you have sincerely shown remorse and the other person is not able to forgive you even after doing your due diligence, (or the person who has hurt you has not altered his or her behavior to be safe), your best choice might be to cut ties. Rebuilding trust is important… but pay attention to when your time is better invested elsewhere.
09 Imagine Different Outcomes: So, you trusted and you got hurt. This does not mean every time that you trust you will get hurt. Learn what you can, and then look to the future. What kind of people do you want to relate to? How would you like them to show up to the relationship?
10 Listen to Your Intuition: Very often when someone betrays us, we had a sense that it was happening or even just a sense that something was not right. The more we hone our intuition the easier it is to make good decisions for ourselves in the future.
11 Forgive Yourself: We all make mistakes. Sometimes, there is a high price tag to pay for the type of mistake that we made – like loss of a relationship, or loss of trust with ourselves. Regardless of what you did or did not do, the best you can do is learn from it and make difference choices in the future.
12 Forgive the Other Person: Building off of forgiving yourself, the person that hurt you also is prone to making mistakes and bad choices. When you are ready, forgiving the person who hurt you can be one of the most liberating actions and can open you up to truly trust again.
13 Try Trusting Again: Seriously, get back on the horse. Perhaps one person broke your trust but how many other people did not? The odds are in your favor. Keep building with the people who have shown themselves to be worthy of your trust.
14 Make Yourself Happy: The happier we are, the healthier we are. The healthier we are the better decisions we make… and the faster we bounce back from our challenges. Taking care of yourself and doing what you love will help you feel courageous enough to trust again.