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How to Rebuild Trust
Betrayal is the ultimate hurt. It is really hard to get over a betrayal by someone who is close to you. The impact of betrayal is broken trust. Once you have broken trust with someone or someone has broken trust with you, it can be almost impossible to rebuild that trust. If you really want to rebuild trust, it can be done. Both parties must be committed to the effort it takes and be willing to take the time and spend the time to rebuild that trust.
Cycle of Trust
Steps to Rebuild Trust
- Commitment: Make the commitment to rebuild trust in the broken relationship. You can’t rebuild trust unless you really and sincerely put 100% of your soul into the effort.
- Admit Wrongdoing and Apologize: Trust can be rebuilt after the person who has committed a grievance or a series of grievances admits his/her error and apologizes. If the relationship is stuck at the point of hurt feelings with neither party apologizing, then it is impossible to move forward. Each person needs to take responsibility for his/her part in breaking down the trust within the relationship and apologize.
- Forgiveness: If you decide you want to rebuild trust, you have to leave the past in the past. Nothing hurts the effort to move forward more than the act of bringing up everything from the past. Once you say that you want to trust again, you agree to start anew and forgive past wrongs. If you haven’t reach the forgiveness point, then you must first work on forgiveness before you can rebuild trust.
- Patience: Rebuilding trust takes time. It takes a lot longer to rebuild trust than it does to break it. The only way you can trust again is to have a history of incidents and episodes in which someone proved his/herself to be trustworthy. So, you have to give the relationship time to experience trust and develop that history of trust.
- Do: Actions do speak louder than words. Anyone can make a promise to not do something again or to do better next time. You can only rebuild trust through actions that show trustworthiness. Show that you can be trusted by making your words match your actions.
Rebuilding trust is hard work. If a relationship or someone means something to you, it is worth the effort to repair broken trust. Trust is built through a cycle of behaviors that show mutual respect and love between two people. Invest the time and energy to build that cycle of trust.