Does trusting people come easily to you? Can you blindly place your trust on people? Or are you the type who would not trust even your shadow? Are you the kind of person who would insist on verifying everything before you trust? Whichever category you might belong to, how important do you think this thing called trust is?
Studies show that trust is one of the most important attribute of human existence. If we can live as a community, it is only due to the mutual trust we have on each other. This begins early in life, when we are kids; we trust our parents and people around us to keep us safe and healthy. When a father throws his child in the air, the child trusts his father to catch him back. He might not have a moment of doubt what would happen if his father failed to catch him. When you are admitted in the hospital for a surgery, you place your trust on the doctor to treat you successfully, if you didn’t, you would not let yourself even be anaesthetized!! You fall in love and you marry, and there couldn’t be a bigger gamble than that. But you trust your partner to love you and be with you for life. So that’s how important trust is, and our brains are hardwired to trust.
But this is not always the case. But what happens when you trust someone and that trust is broken? Can you heal yourself and trust again? If I had to answer that question, I trusted people too easily. I didn’t think someone would cheat me ever, because I did not cheat anyone. I believed people were being as frank as I was with them. Of course you know where I am getting to, don’t you? This naivety and being all that trustful was the biggest mistake I could have made…..or so I thought! Not only did it hurt me in all the wrong places, it also took my trust out of trusting people! Was I wrong in trusting people then? Probably yes, probably no…
There are different areas in our brain that deal with this issue of trust differently. One part of the brain is wired to trust, but there is also another area of our brain that is wired to logically think over things. It is the part that helps us to reason out things and then allow us to trust. Going back to the earlier example, how did the child learn to trust? The child being in close contact with the parent on a daily basis, has learnt to trust his parent. Why did you trust your doctor? By checking out the doctor’s credentials and by verifying his success details, and perhaps talking to some patient he has treated successfully in the past, you have learnt to trust yourself to him. How did you know your partner was right for you? Before you married, you must have put your better half through a lot of tests, some upfront, some subconsciously, to know if he is right for you. That means, we do use logical thinking before we trust someone.
If that is the case, why did trusting someone hurt me? Did I not verify? Did I not use my logical side of the brain? The answer is - how much ever we try to use logic, there a lot of times when we rely on our hearts and not on our minds to make decisions for us. And the decisions made by the heart stand as much a chance of being wrong as the decisions made by the mind, using logical thinking. In spite of years of trusting, there is still that tiny chance that the parent might just miss grabbing the child in time…or the highly successful surgeon may mess up your case….or the partner you were so confident of, dumps you at some stage!!
So do you trust or do you not? I would say, keep your trust intact. Keep your faith in people intact. A few bad cases of misplaced trust shouldn’t be a deterrent in breaking your trust in the entire humankind.