It all started when...


Jar of marbles

Trust is like a jar of marbles, it is built on small moments and situations. Each small action of a person adds a marble or takes one away.

What are the elements of trust?

The acronym BRAVING helps to remember:

B -Boundaries We are clear about our own boundaries and we hold them. We are clear about the other person’s boundaries and we respect them.

R - Reliability We do what we say we’re going to do. Every time, over and over again (image: scale). It also means being aware of our limitations and not committing to more than we can deliver.

A- Accountability When we make a mistake, we are willing to own it, apologize for it, and make amends. When the other person makes a mistake, we allow them to own it, apologize for it, and make amends.

V - Vault   What I share with you, you will hold in confidence. What you share with me, I will hold in confidence. In our relationship, we both show that we acknowledge confidentiality by also not sharing secrets third parties have shared with us. (Common enemy intimacy is fake.)

I - Integrity Choosing courage over comfort. Choosing what’s right over what’s fun, fast and easy. Practising your values, not just professing them.

N - Non-Judgement I can fall apart, ask for help and be in struggle - without being judged by you. You can fall apart, ask for help and be in struggle - without being judged by me. We’re better at helping than at asking for help. If you judge needing help as negative, you also think less of the person who is asking for your help. Try not to get value from being the helper in the relationship. Dare to ask for help and think of this as brave.

G - Generosity You make the most generous assumption about my words, intentions, and behaviour, and then talk to me about it. If I screw up, say something bad or forget something, you will make a generous assumption. Outro: In heartbreak, failures etc., we often lose our self-trust. Instead of claiming you were stupid or naïve, ask yourself: Did I honour my own boundaries? Was I reliable, can I count on myself? Did I hold myself accountable? Was I protective of my stories (vault)? Did I stay in my integrity? Was I judgemental towards myself? Did I give myself the benefit of the doubt, was I generous towards myself? If braving relationships with other people is braving connections, self-trust is braving self-love and self-respect - the wildest adventure we’ll ever take in our whole lives. If you don’t trust yourself, you cannot ask others to trust you! If you find yourself struggling with trust, the thing to examine first is your own marble jar - how you treat yourself. We can’t ask people to give us something that we don’t believe we deserve to receive. You will know you’re worthy of receiving trust, when you trust yourself above everyone else.