Restoring trust in a relationship can be one of the most difficult things that anyone has to do. Many people think that trust must be earned. I used to be one of those people.
Now, I often urge people that ultimately, trust must be given. It can never be earned.
That doesn’t mean it should be without boundaries. In fact it should have good boundaries. I believe there are four steps to restoring trust in any relationship. These steps are linear and usually have to be followed in order. Those steps are:

  1. Both people have to agree there is a problem
  2. Clear, measurable action steps need to be identified and agreed upon.
  3. Time has to be given for the action steps to be followed (this is in itself an act of trust with boundaries).
  4. Trust has to be given.

What do you think? How could these steps help restore trust in a relationship you are in or know of?

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  1. Step four is problematic in that trust has already been given. Maybe step four could/should be trust established or the act of trusting continued.

  2. Hi Wayne,
    Thanks for reading and commenting. Step 4 is more the final giving of the trust being viewed as restored trust. In other words, step three I the process and step 4 is the actual trust given. Does that distinction help?

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