Give Trust, Earn Mistrust

My wife and I were talking about how you give honor, but you earn respect.  Or put simply, you care about someone even if you don’t know them well enough to respect them or the actions because everyone has an intrinsic value.  Christianity calls this loving your neighbors as well as your enemies.  Not a natural inclination for us to do.

This got me to thinking about other things you give before you get and one that came to mind was giving trust, and allowing people to earn mistrust.  This was a concept I learned about while listen to one of Craig Groeschel’s podcasts and recently reinforced on a recent one where he was talking about How to Develop Leaders. 

This follows the same line of thinking above, that people are valuable, we should invest in them, and that you give them trust to build into them.  This is contrary to what most people think, as the saying goes you earn trust.  However, if you believe that people matter you really should start with trusting them.  Not only will this build your relationship faster and let them see that you care, you will gain credibility with them and they will trust you in return. 

Does this mean that no one will earn that mistrust, not at all, but you will find that it is far fewer than you think and your relationships will be more fruitful than assuming you can’t trust them to begin with.