When I read The Speed of Trust by Stephen M.R. Covey, it confirmed my belief that trust is one of the most important factors in any relationship, be it business or personal. What really bothers me is just how little importance it is given in our world today.
I once shared an apartment with a friend who loooooved borrowing my stuff! My personal rule is don’t ask for anything unless you really, really, really, really, really times a million, really need it! I don’t mind lending, but I think that borrowing implies that the person who borrows intends to return it back to its owner, and the owner expects it back. My friend just never returned anything she borrowed. She borrowed my hangers and promised to return them after buying hers, but simply never returned them. Every time I walked into her room, I would see her clothes hanging on my hangers, while mine were still in boxes back in my room. Eventually, I got tired and bought others. Then she borrowed my shoes, then it was my food (we shared a fridge) and so on… but the last straw was when she just took my clean socks without asking from the lines and wore them. No one shares socks!!!!!I decided sharing apartments isn’t for me, I found my own place! We’re still friends but she doesn’t know where I stay. I just can’t trust her with my things.
At the moment, I live in a very quiet and friendly neighbourhood where everybody knows everybody, and everybody knows everybody’s business. It’s the kind of neighbourhood where everyone attends everyone’s party and that kind of stuff. I love this safe and cozy neighbourhood but…
A few weeks ago, my neighbour borrowed my wheelbarrow, which I bought a while back when I hired contractors to do some construction work in my backyard. He promised to return it on the same day, it’s been three weeks now and no sign of my wheelbarrow! It’s not the fact that I need it now that bothers me (the contractors have finished working on my backyard and I doubt I’ll ever need a wheelbarrow again), it’s the fact that he sees me every morning when he’s driving off to work, greets me but never mentions anything about returning my wheelbarrow, which he promised to return on the very day he borrowed it! I feel annoyed, irritated and angry when he greets me every morning with that cynical smile! I don’t need the wheelbarrow and I’ll probably never use it, but it’s mine and I want it back! Why should I have to remind him to return my wheelbarrow? I’m putting the brakes on trusting this neighbour!
Two months ago, my boss stole my coffee mug! Well, sort of. He borrowed it to have a cup of coffee and promised to return it. Since then, my mug has been sitting on his desk, he uses it everyday! He tells the lady who works in the kitchen to return it to his office immediately after washing it! Every time I walk into his office, I see the cup there! And sometimes he even uses it in front of me! And I’m terrified to ask for my lovely coffee mug back, even though I really want it back! Well, wanted!
About two hours ago, I was walking down the corridor and I looked up just as my boss was exiting his office with my mug in his hand. Seconds later, it slipped off from his hand, fell on the floor and broke into pieces!
As I watched in dismay as the office cleaner picked up the shattered pieces of glass that was once a mug I loved so much, I thought to myself “Trust really is like glass. Once broken, it is very difficult to repair.” I also believe that if a person has betrayed you in the past, he or she is most likely to do it again!
Have a lovely weekend!
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