Cliff was fed up, disappointed, hurt and felt like a fool for trusting too much once again…
And his father was the reason.
After years of rehashing the same argument about Cliff going into the ministry instead of pursuing a career in what he loved–music…
Cliff was done.
He was tired of believing that finally his father was going to be supportive of him…
And he never was.
Cliff reached out to us for help and had some realizations that allowed him more peace in his relationship than he ever thought possible.
Before we get to that, here’s what trust really is…
Trust is feeling and believing that someone else is going to do what you want them to do.
Yes, you read that correctly.
If you feel like you may be trusting too much, you’ve probably been hurt like Cliff–maybe lied to or repeatedly disappointed…
And you don’t know if it’s smart to open to trusting that person once again.
You don’t know if they’re going to follow-through and act in the way you want them to–or not.
The truth is that actions tell a person’s true commitment…
And sometimes we don’t want to believe what we see and deep inside know what’s true…
Because we want that person to be different from who he or she truly wants to be.
How do you know if you’re trusting too much or not?
If you’ve been trying over and over to make the relationship better but it isn’t working to your satisfaction…
Take a step back and cut through your assumptions to find out what the other person really wants and that they know what you want in the relationship.
You’ll know then without relying on your hope and desire that the person change in the way you want him or her to change…
And you can make a choice.
How did it work for Cliff?
Here are a few discoveries he made about trusting too much as he talked with us…
1. Slow down and step back
As we invited Cliff to slow down and step back out of everything that had happened in the past with his dad…
He discovered that he’d never asked his dad why he felt so strongly about him going into the ministry.
He saw that he wasn’t going to change his father–and his father wasn’t going to change his desire to pursue music…
But maybe Cliff could understand his father on a deeper level without trying to defend himself.
2. Quit defending his position and pushing against
As we talked, Cliff saw that in defending his right to choose his own career and trusting that his father would understand if he said it enough or loudly enough…
He realized that in defending so forcefully, there wasn’t an opening for either of them to come together and understand one another.
3. Listen inside to what you want
Setting all the anger and disappointment aside, Cliff saw that he wanted was a relationship with his father but he didn’t need his “blessing” as he went forward with his music.
As he let the tug-of-war rope go, Cliff found a new sense of peace as his desire that his father approve of his career faded.
Does Cliff’s father still want him to study the ministry?
Probably but he doesn’t bring it up as often and is actually interested in how Cliff’s career is going.
The important thing is that Cliff found the love inside him for his father that had been buried by all the anger and mistrust over the years.
–Are you in a relationship situation where you feel like you might be trusting too much?
–Are you open to seeing honestly what you both want in the relationship?
–Are you arguing with reality in such a way that you’re ignoring what’s true?
–Are you hanging onto a hope that hasn’t been borne out in reality?
–Or is the other person acting in such a way that shows they want things to change in the way you want?
–Is there a conscious desire on both your parts to be in this relationship together as you both want?
When you make those discoveries, you get to choose.
Can you trust too much?
Not if you get clear and conscious about both your desires for the relationship, without making assumptions, and lead with love.