By – Kayode Ipadeola
This week I thought we cheap in something knew. After all murdering of thoughts, I finally got a spec I believe would be of help to us all.
Despite the assertions of some great scholars that broken trust cannot be repaired, I stand boldly to say it can be repaired and rebuilt based on optimistic view. However I caution that rebuilding trust is not as straightforward as building trust in the first instance.
After trust has been damaged, there are basically two key consideration for the victim:
- Dealing with stress and violation imposed on the relationship and-
- Determining if future violations will occur.
After a trust violation and the cognity and affective fallout that ensues, the first critical question is- is the victim willing to reconcile? If the victim believes that the violator will not make efforts of righting the wrongs and minimizing future violations, the victim has no incentive to attempt reconciliation and restore trust.
Reconciliation and forgiveness clarification
Reconciliation occurs when both parties exert effort to rebuild a damaged relationship, and strive to settle the issues that led to the disruption of the relationship.
Reconciliation is also a behavioral manifestation of forgiveness, defined as a deliberate decision by the victim to surrender feelings of resentment and grant amnesty to the offender. However it is possible to forgive someone (release he/she has inflicted) without exhibiting a willingness to reconcile the relationship or trust him/her again in the future.
An example may be when a battered woman forgives her abuser (as a means of coping and psychological healing), but does not allow the relationship to continue. Thus, following a tryst violation, the trust ‘cannot’ be rebuilt if the victim is not willing to reconcile.
What individuals can do
It should be noted that trust building is a bilateral process that requires mutual commitment and process that requires mutual commitment and effort, especially when attempting to deescalate conflict. Nonetheless, there are several ways individuals can act on thief own to initiate or encourage the trust building process. This can be accomplished either by taking steps to minimize the risk that the other party will act in untrustworthy ways, or by policing one’s own action to ensure they are perceived as evidence of trustworthiness.
Other ways of rebuilding trust include:
- Performing competently- By performing one’s duty and obligations competently.
- Establishing consistency and predicability- We can enhance the degree to which others will regard us as trustworthy when we behave in consistent and predictable ways. Every effort should be made to ensure that our words are congruent with our subsequent actions and that we honor pledged commitments.
- Communicating accurately, openly and transparently
- Sharing and delegating control- Trust often needs to be given for it to be returned.
- Showing concern for others- The trust others have in you will grow when you show sensitivity to their needs.
So who says trust can’t be rebuilt?