Most relationship problems are essentially trust issues, explains psychotherapist David Richo. Whether it’s fear of commitment, insecurity, jealousy, or a tendency to be controlling, the real obstacle is a fundamental lack of trust—both in ourselves and in our partner.
Daring to Trust offers key insights and practical exercises for exploring and addressing our trust issues in relationships. Topics include:
• How we learn early in life to trust others (or not to trust them)
• Why we fear trusting
• Developing greater trust in ourselves as the basis for trusting others
• How to know if someone is trustworthy
• Naïve trust vs. healthy, adult trust
• What to do when trust is broken
Ultimately, Richo explains, we must develop trust in four directions: toward ourselves, toward others, toward life as it is, and toward a higher power or spiritual path. These four types of trust are not only the basis of healthy relationships, they are also the foundation of emotional well-being and freedom from fear.
"Trust is not a feeling. It begins as a belief about the other," explains Richo (When the Past Is Present), a longtime therapist and author who transforms his kindly advice into an easy-to-understand "bible" of trust. The author introduces the concept of the "Five A's" he deems pivotal to trust in any adult relationship: Attention, Acceptance, Appreciation, Affection, and Allowing. Especially helpful is a point-by-point checklist to aid readers in determining if someone can be trusted. While some guiding principals may seem self-evident ("Does not lie or have a secret life") others are more nuanced, such as "May operate on the basis of self-interest but never at my expense or at the expense of others." Filled with informative quizzes and fact-based assessments, the slim book offers a great deal of real-world advice governing adult relations, especially regarding modern romance in a shifting world. Richo's greatest ambition focuses on readers' ability to self-nurture, and he devotes the book's most enjoyable chapters to this subject. The take-away? The most important person to trust is yourself.