How Do You Know When to Trust Someone?

“The best way to find out if you can trust someone is to trust them.” – Ernest Hemingway.


Knowing when to trust someone or give them the benefit of the doubt is tricky business. As a general rule, I err on the side of trusting upfront until I’m given a reason not to trust in the future. Actually, trust is a convention that speaks more to your character and insecurities than anyone else’s. I wouldn’t even say that once I feel wronged that I become less trusting … I just trust differently … I trust that the person that has wronged me has the capacity to wrong me again. 


Well, that’s pretty morbid, huh? Trust speaks to expectations. If I expect respect and candid honesty and either, or both, of those concepts are violated then now I know what to expect from you — and typically that means I don’t expect much. Kevin Gates, who I typically vehemently disagree with, said something that really resonated with me in an interview:

When someone shows you who they are, believe them, right? I’m not in the business of dirtying my hands looking for negatives or downfalls when people tend to do that on their own when their truth is rooted in dishonesty. I’ll always give you enough rope to do with what you please until there’s no more slack and you inevitably hang yourself. And at that point, we’re at an impasse. The moment you reveal that your motives are not aligned with mine then it’s the peace sign.

Boundaries. People talk about protecting your space by not inviting negative vibes or individuals into your life. I don’t like to speak in generalities or apply one perspective to my life as law but in this scenario, it applies. It’s not that I hold grudges because carrying that negativity only becomes burdensome and stifles growth. Don’t block your blessings but trust yourself enough when something doesn’t sit right with you to honor those feelings. That speaks to balance. Understand yourself enough to know what is acceptable for you and what is not. When you find that something is unacceptable, charge it to the game and move accordingly. If that means removing it from your life, distancing yourself or if you feel like it’s worth a shot to wait around for things to change then by all means – do that! Awareness is key.


In a previous post I mentioned that I stopped taking things that people do personally. We’re all on our own growth trajectory and that’s fine and dandy but that doesn’t mean you have to stick around until one is ready to grow. Some people find comfort in familiarity. Some find “I’ve always been this way,” to be acceptable. That’s also fine because someone enabled that behavior and found that to be acceptable too. However, fundamental and foundational character flaws are the ones that warrant the ill fadeaway jumper. Bottom line, I expect candid honesty and respect from any and everyone I invite into my space, if you can’t honor that then I’ll have to respectfully wish you well. 


What’s your indisputable bottom line? How do you know when you’re ready to trust?



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