This post is an answer to a submitted question. It aims to provide help and solutions to overcome the issue.
Podcast version: HERE
Quote: “If you cannot empathize with those who lack wisdom, you may not recognize it within yourself.”
"What do I do about my trust issues?
As I have gotten older I have realized how many people have lied to me in my life. I don't really feel like getting into the gory details but I have been burned by people many times. I put my trust in people and they ended up being completely untrustworthy. Even close family members lied to me. I am not talking about small white lies either, but big lies.
Now I have a seriously hard time trusting people and I am feeling like I am becoming paranoid. I used to be very trusting when I was younger but now that is starting to fade. It hurts because now I feel wary of so many people, including people I used to trust and love.”
My Response if we were in a coaching setting. Although without being able to ask questions, I may assume or use scenarios to fill in the gaps.
What you describe does sound tough and can lead to a life of isolation.
Isolation, can make one feel cut off from the rest of the world, creating a sense of loneliness and sadness. The absence of human connection and companionship can be incredibly overwhelming, as humans are inherently social beings who thrive on interaction and support from others. Assuming a bit here, I would guess that you’re ambivalent about the connections that you currently have and those that you could have, you want to be connected, however your past provides proof that you get hurt from them. Our world can become super small if we believe everyone is out to burn us.
What’s the benefit of not trusting? There is one, has to be, that’s what’s creating this pattern.
Your experience isn’t unique, and certainly we all have felt burned or taken advantage of. There’s also multiple versions of any situation, yours unfortunately feels like other people hurt you, or caused you to be paranoid.
What if no person, place, thing, situation, or circumstance could inject feelings of being hurt, mad, sad, angry, upset, untrusting, or paranoid?
You see it’s not what the person did, or said, it’s your beliefs, your rules, your perception, your judgments, interpretations, assumptions, and impressions that lead you to these feelings.
Our feelings come from our thinking.
Seeking other people’s experience, by asking friends, family or me is evidence gathering for a negative based thinking pattern.
When we believe people in general are untrustworthy, we will start to look for validation and proof that they are indeed unworthy of trust and rather quickly your world will shrink. Your behavior, your energy your suspicious will rise and you’ll most certainly attract that type of person in your sphere and repel people of a higher level of genuineness.
We all have met someone that’s grumpy and blames everyone for everything. Finger pointing and blaming people for their feelings. That’s not where feelings are generated. We are thinking feeling beings, this means every feeling you have aside from ones that are from physical harm, are pure thought.
Is this how you want to live your life?
How do you want to feel?
Your question is WHAT to do, the answer will be in how you answer this question.
I would hope your answers would be in the realm of: safe, accepted, loved, admired, inspired, open, curious, loving, loved, brave, appreciated, kind, compassionate, empathetic, optimistic etc.
There’s two energies, one is fear and one is love. When we operate from fear or untrusting energy we are closed off to the world, opportunities, possibilities, and the door closes to experiencing what most people deeply want from this life. Develop connections, make memories, and have fun experiences. If you're walking around constantly on the lookout for evidence to validate your belief that people are untrustworthy, you will undoubtedly stumble upon it. However, it is important to recognize that by fixating on this negative perception, your life will inevitably become monotonous and lack excitement.
What matters most to you? How do you want to be remembered? What matters most to you at the end of your life?
I hope this helps. I wish you all the best. Please share this with anyone you believe would benefit from the insights. Post a comment, I read and reply to them all. Thank you in advance!
If you want to send a question, please send to email@example.com please include:
- A coachable question (something that addresses what's in your control, your thoughts, feelings or actions.)
- And context, explain a situation in the past, currently going through, or worries/concerns of the future, giving me some details on your thoughts and feelings about it.