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Rebuilding your faith in humanity is a long road, but it can be done. Savvy Psychologist Dr. Ellen Hendriksen offers 8 ways to rebuild your trust in people. As an Amazon Associate and a Bookshop. A few months ago on the podcast we talked about how to rebuild trust in a relationship. But what happens if mistrust expands beyond a partner to, well, everyone? Not trusting anyone keeps you safe from hurt and betrayal, but it also leaves you isolated and suspicious. How does this happen? How does one lose faith in humanity? And how can you find it again? For example, at a restaurant, your script goes something like this: look at the menu, order, eat your food, pay, and leave.
You know what to expect. Many people, as kids, learn a script about life that goes something like this: I get hurt or upset, someone comforts me, I feel better. They learned I get hurt or upset, someone blames me or gets mad, I feel worse. Or, I get hurt or upset, no one notices, I am alone. Scripts like these are a recipe for feeling unable to trust or get close to others.
It makes sense—if getting what we need from other humans was the unexpected exception rather than the reliable rule, it would be foolish to trust. Now, other times, the script we learn in childhood is healthy, but then gets rocked by the earthquake of trauma.
For instance, the love of our life cheats, we get swindled by someone we trust, or we make ourselves vulnerable and get abandoned. To make the move from head to heart, in many cases, takes a leap of faith. How do you set yourself up to take a real-life leap of faith? How can you trust again, deep in your bones?
Start by trying these 8 things. Ground yourself in a routine. Give a little, and see what you get. Make plans for the future. Trust an animal. Be trustworthy. Actively look for trustworthy behavior. Grow the belief that you deserve to be around trustworthy people. Let's dive deeper into each tactic.
Stay in one place. Moving around the country or the world is a socially acceptable way to sever ties and never get close to people. This will feel wrong at first. You will feel the urge to pack up and start over, whether across town or across the globe, but try to settle in. Once you put down some roots, you can branch out by getting to know—and trust—the people around you.
The same gym class, the same people at the dog park, the same Sunday morning coffee shop. Repetition—seeing the same faces again and again—is the first step to building trust. Reveal a little bit about yourself and see what happens. Or ask for a little and see what you get. Make yourself a tiny bit vulnerable: ask a neighbor for a favor, a friend for advice, or even a stranger to please help you reach that can of tomatoes on the top shelf at the supermarket.
Having a need and getting it met adds a drop to the bucket of trust. It may not seem like much, but drop by drop, you discover that most people mean well and will help you when you need it. This content does not replace the professional judgment of your own mental health provider. Please consult a d mental health professional for all individual questions and issues.
She earned her Ph. Her scientifically-based, zero-judgment approach is regularly featured in Psychology Today, Scientific American, The Huffington Post , and many other media outlets. Jump to . October 6, We are currently experiencing playback issues on Safari. If you would like to listen to the audio, please use Google Chrome or Firefox. All content here is for informational purposes only. About the Author. You May Also Like Savvy Psychologist.
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How to Trust People Again: 8 Easy Steps