To gain someone’s trust takes a hell of a time compared to losing it. When you are let down by people over and over again, you get startled every time when it comes to trusting new people. Finding it hard to trust, is agitated by experiences you encounter in different phases of your life.
Struggling to trust people easily doesn’t always necessarily imply that all the people out there are not reliable. Traumatic experiences from the past can often hold a person back from counting on people. Also, dealing with narcissists who do not reciprocate mutual understanding and respect, makes one prone to finding it hard to trust people easily.
In this article, I have provided reasons behind why don’t I trust people– with which you might resonate. And it might help you to let go of the baggage of guilt you have been carrying along for not being able to trust people easily.
5 Reasons Behind Why Don’t I Trust People Easily
In the course of time, you would get to the point of realization that trust needs to be earned. It is not something you can provide to everyone- especially to those who have disappointed you and broken your trust numerous times. Here are the reasons behind why don’t I trust people so that you understand what leads a person to suffer from trust issues
1. Past Experiences
Imagine you are walking under a tree, and you get a narrow escape from its heavy fallen branch. Now, this incident will forever make you avoid walking under a tree. Because you do not want to go through that horrifying experience again. Likewise, when your trust is broken badly in the past, you tend to avoid trusting others to avoid any saddening experience again.
Experiences hold you from trusting a reliable person easily as well. Therefore, whenever I try to take the leap of faith to trust others I end up visualizing the disappointments and let-downs I have faced. And then it seems better to trust the few I already know than trusting new ones easily.
Past traumatic experiences- be it being bullied or being let down by close ones, somewhat make you isolated from the world. Speaking from experience, past saddening experiences often make you perplexed regarding evaluating people and their true intentions.
Also, in the past, those who I used to count on, never used to reciprocate mutual respect, care, and understanding. And this also keeps me in doubt regarding trusting new people. Because, these experiences will keep reminding yourself that you will always be taken for granted no matter how much effort you put for others.
If you are haunted by your experiences, and you want to get rid of them, I would suggest you go through counseling. And it might help you out in knowing when to count on someone.
To a narcissist, no matter how much you try to make them happy and content, it is never enough. And they tend to blame their unhappiness on you without considering any perspective from your side.
Narcissists are never grateful, even if I were to turn the world upside down for their happiness. They seem to wear me out. Also, they are never there when I need to count on someone to confide in. They tend to judge you without even knowing your side of the story.
They seem to build a guilt trap to make it seem like it is always my fault if things go wrong. These traits make me anxious when it comes to trusting others. Because back in my mind I will always be concerned that if the person turns out to be a narcissist, it would leave me with nothing but guilt and agony.
3. People Who Disrespect Boundaries
Whether you are an introvert or an extrovert, you definitely have your principles and boundaries set. And if people don’t respect those, it is nothing but a waste of time to try to get along with them by trusting them.
Some people try to instill their principles in me and disrespect my boundaries. No matter how much I explain to them, they do not bother to understand the gravitas of my boundaries. They try to mold me into someone I am not. They try to make me do and like things which are not of my preferences.
Respecting others’ boundaries is one of the significant and consistent traits of a reliable person. Without it, it gets impossible at times for me to let my guards down. Because once I do so, they would again let me down. So, I choose to trust people less to protect my boundaries.
4. They Value Their Ego More Than Any Bond
I have come to the point of realization that people who never value human relationships over their ego cannot be reliable. Because of their ego, they remain in their bubble and seem to disregard their irresponsibility and any sort of immorality they cause.
Over the course of time, I have observed that most people value their ego more than the truths and any form of bond. And their ego makes them believe that admitting fault will make them seem vulnerable. And they always want to appear as a strong-headed person. So, they disregard the truths and how they have hurt other people.
Their ego makes them turn a blind eye to their faults. And such people can go to any extent to prove that the other person is at fault. Forgiving and trusting such people will lead you nowhere but unresolved dispute and sheer frustration.
I cannot give such people the benefit of doubt with the hope that someday they might change. Because, getting along with someone who never values the bond I share with them and continues disappointing me, is nothing but me disrespecting my own self-respect. And I cannot trust anyone with whom I need to keep my self-respect at stake.
5. Their Actions do not Match Their Words
It is not that difficult to make a promise to fulfill something. But it is really difficult when it comes to keeping your words. People with no integrity and zero consideration for my feelings always fail at keeping their words.
People can promise to always be there for you at your worst. But during your bad phases, if they do not act upon their promises, their words are of no value. I do not trust people who do not mean what they say. Because, if I trust such people, I will start keeping expectations from them and when they will fail to keep up with my expectations it will hurt me terribly.
I tend to avoid trusting people on the basis of their words and promises. Because, words can fool you, but actions can never fool you in the long run. So, I always observe who acts according to their words. And most of the time, they do not bother to turn their words into reality. So, I do not keep my trust in them.
How to Spot A Trustworthy Person?
With a trustworthy person, you can always wear your heart on your sleeve. Because you know that the person(s) would not judge you and your experiences. And finding such trustworthy people can be difficult but not impossible. Here are my takes on spotting trustworthy people:
They Are Empathetic
If a person around you tried to understand others’ situations rather than jumping to conclusions, they tend to be empathetic. I understand that it is not possible for others to completely understand you. But empathetic people try to walk in your shoes before making any judgment.
Empathetic people are active listeners. They would always make you feel heard and accepted. As they are active listeners and value emotions, you would notice that they hardly interrupt while you speak.
When you confide in them, they try to analyze your situations from different perspectives. Therefore, if you remorse for something, they would not focus on your past mistakes. Rather they would appreciate your personal development and would advise you not to repeat the mistakes.
Being understood and accepted by someone for who you are is what we always look for from other persons. And empathetic people tend to possess traits to understand others. They also reciprocate your kindness. Their contemplating and compassionate traits make them trustworthy.
They Do Not Fear Being Confronted
Confrontation does not always necessarily mean an aggressive dispute. Rather it can bring positive outcomes in all relationships if confrontation is handled carefully.
If you want to know whether a person you know is trustworthy or not, confront them regarding their mistakes. If they are mature enough, they wouldn’t avoid confrontation and sugarcoat things. And they would own up to their mistakes instead of blaming it on someone or something else.
Dealing with confrontation makes them credible. And when people do that, it’s because they want to keep transparency in the relationship by clearing the air. Such people do not take any human relationships for granted, therefore they tend to resolve problems while being confronted.
They Learn from Their Mistakes
As human beings, we are bound to make mistakes. However, a mistake that is made over and over again, is not a mistake anymore. Rather it is a reflection of how the other person is inconsiderate towards you.
Mistakes can be forgiven once or twice. But if the person keeps on repeating the same behavior that hurts you, that is not a mistake rather their decision. They have decided to repeat the behavior because they take your feelings for granted.
You should realize who learns from their mistakes and who never seems to bother correcting the mistakes. If the other person is considerate enough to correct their mistake instead of repeating, you can count on that person when it comes to protecting your feelings.
They Show Consistency
No matter how hard people try to pull off a veil of morality and considerate nature, it is bound to fall apart sooner or later. And then you will be able to tell the genuine personality from the fake one.
Genuine and reliable people would show consistency in their moral behavior. They will not treat you as a person of value one day, and take you for granted the other day. Once they find you reliable enough, they would reciprocate your kindness and efforts with consistency.
Also, you will notice they mean what they say. As consistency matters to them, they keep their words. You should always observe the consistency in a person’s behavior to know their true intentions.
So, why don’t I trust people easily? It is because I shouldn’t and neither should you. If you could resonate with any of my reasons, you need to realize that it is completely normal to do so and you shouldn’t blame yourself for not letting people in. As long as you do not let others down on purpose, you shouldn’t question your reliability and worth.