How do I know if someone is safe and worthy of my trust?
Is it a feeling?
Is it knowing if someone is lying or genuine?
Is it body language?
Is it just luck?
I used to rely on my feelings to tell me if someone was safe. I used to think I would just “know”. I used to think I was really good at identifying if someone was deceptive.
And the truth is, I WAS good at identifying lies. I WAS good at feeling someone’s intentions. I WAS good at seeing someone’s heart.
I was REALLY BAD at discerning CHARACTER.
I was looking for all the wrong things.
The ONE thing that most accurately determines trustworthiness was the ONE thing I didn’t want to “judge”.
Past behavior doesn’t lie…
Have they kept their word?
Have they had integrity?
Do they have outstanding debts?
Have they taken advantage of others?
Have they betrayed others who trusted them?
Have they been malicious to other people?
Have they managed their resources well?
Do they have a history of poor boundaries?
Have they been addicted to harmful substances?
Have they taken responsibility for creating the life they want?
Have they had trouble taking accountability for their mistakes?
Do they have a laundry list of blaming and excuses for the negative consequences they are experiencing?
The fact is the BEST indicator of the future is the PAST.
When you apply for a loan, they don’t interview you to see how genuine you are about paying them back. They look at your PAST commitments. They gauge how good your word is TODAY based on how reliable your word was YESTERDAY.
The awesome thing is - credit scores CHANGE. They change based on ACTION - not how genuine you say you are about keeping your word.
I had a history of relationships with people who were GENUINE about WANTING to change. They didn’t want to keep hurting me. But they weren’t willing to do the work. They weren’t willing to take action. They weren’t willing to get help, go to counseling, go to support groups, hire a coach, get a sponsor, read books, take courses, etc etc. They weren’t willing to do what was NECESSARY to change the CREDIT SCORE.
They only wanted change so long as it was CONVENIENT for them.
But true soul change is never convenient. It is gut wrenching and raw. It’s courageous and demanding. It’s messy. It takes a LOT of attention, effort, and investment.
I know a person is SAFE when I see them DOING THE WORK. I know a person is SAFE when I see their TRACK RECORD of ACTIONS.
It is my responsibility to protect my space with my DISCERNMENT and then respond with my own ACTION. It is therefore my responsibility to get clear about my own REQUIREMENTS to be in my space. Just like a lender, there are requirements to access me. Just like a credit score, there are clear and objective measurements of trustworthiness.
Today, my trust is not freely given. It is EARNED.
How do YOU determine if someone is safe?