Do you feel like you need to keep tabs on the people close to you all the time? Do you question everyone’s actions and motives? Do you have a hard time accepting that people aren’t trying to hurt you? When you’ve been betrayed in the past, it can be hard to learn to trust again. The good news is with some serious work and patience, you can resolve your trust issues and heal properly.
Step away from the past.
Even though it’s difficult to forget the wrongs that have been done to you, holding on to past pain will only keep you from enjoying the present. Don’t crucify the rest of humanity for the crimes of one person. People are made of good and bad parts, so you can’t always trust them to not hurt you. As long as they haven’t given you a reason to doubt them, focus on their good side.
Let go of your fear.
Letting your walls down and allowing yourself to be vulnerable might seem like the least sensible idea in the world, but you can’t overcome your trust issues without first letting go of your fear of getting hurt. Even though there’s a tiny chance you might get hurt, there’s also a chance for love, joy, affection, and happiness. Open yourself to possibilities instead of hiding behind your fears.
Have a clear idea of what you want.
People will often let you down if you give them the opportunity to do so. You need to make up your mind about what you want out of your relationships and make sure the people you let in are aware of those expectations. Put yourself first, make choices that are right for you even if it seems selfish. When you truly understand what you want and don’t want in your friends or lovers, you’ll be more careful about whom you open yourself up to, and it’ll be easier to trust them.
Be conscious of projecting your feelings on others.
Nobody wants to confront their ugly, dark, and unwanted feelings, and pouring them on others can be a way for us to avoid doing that. When you say you have a hard time trusting people, what it really means is that you don’t know how to trust yourself. Don’t let your personal feelings and experiences cloud your judgment of others.
Deal with the root cause of your issues.
Our problems do not arise out of nowhere—something must have happened to trigger them. Maybe the reason you can’t trust people is that your feelings were dismissed as a child. Maybe you’ve been lied to, cheated on, abandoned, you feel unsafe, or wounds from previous relationships are still raw. Once you can trace your trust issues back to the events that birthed them, you can get to work on changing your perspective and the effect it has on you.
Talk about what you need.
Ask yourself what would make you feel safe in your relationships, then have an honest discussion about them with your friends and partner. You don’t have to resolve everything right away or even come up with a permanent solution that banishes your trust issues away for good. If you need reassurances, ask for it. Let your loved ones do what they can to help lessen your insecurities.
Find healthy ways to keep your mind occupied.
While you’re waiting for a call or for your partner to get back from hanging with their friends, you need to keep busy so your mind doesn’t wander. Instead of getting all worked up, sending a hundred texts in quick succession, calling up someone else to make your partner jealous, find a way to give them space. Focus on your hobbies or anything that makes you feel good about yourself to distract from the anxiety of the moment.
Learn to trust yourself.
You can’t trust people until you figure out a way to trust yourself. This means accepting that you don’t have poor judgment just because you chose to love someone who ended up hurting you. Stop doubting yourself and have some faith in your decisions. You are not to blame for the ways that people have wronged you. Forgive yourself for whatever role you think you played.
Accept that a betrayal of your trust would not destroy you.
The truth is that no matter how hurt you feel when someone betrays your trust, the pain is surely going to pass. It’s going to take more than that to break you down. No matter the rage, uncertainty, rejection, and hurt that may come your way, you’re not going to fall apart. You’ve survived so much already and you’re going to be just fine.
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