Do you know the formula for trust?

     I recently worked with a couple who needed guidance navigating through an issue that had recently arisen in their marriage.  I took them through a CliftonStrengths session and identified their top 5 talents and used their talents to identify how their basement and balconies were impacting their marriage.

Everything was going well until we approached the topic of TRUST.  The husband, whose number one talent is Analytical, was having a hard time understanding why his wife did not trust him.  He explained how he never had an affair and did not lie to her.  To him, being honest and faithful were how he established trust in the relationship.  I decided to write out the trust equation so his analytical mind could see the situation from a different perspective.

     The Trust Equation:
Trust= R (Reliability) + C (Credibility) + I (Intimacy)
S (Self-Orientation)
R= Reliability:  Do you do what you say you are going to do?  Are you a person who keeps his word?
C= Credibility:  Do you have the means or education or time to show up as a credible source?
I= Intimacy:  Are you intimate in your communication, hand holding, etc?  Do you pursue your wife so that she feels valued and loved?

S=Self-Orientation: Do most of your actions reveal your service to others or to yourself?

After he gave himself a number in each area of the equation, we turned and had his wife give him a score as well.  He was shocked at how both scores were so similar and realized there was a whole depth to trust that he had never considered.

The trust equation can be extremely helpful for you and your partner to consider. Everyone has a different definition of trust, so establishing what trust means to you will help you get unSTUCK in your thinking and in your relationships.


Traci Newkirk
Chief Team Developer

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