Trust. It’s a five-letter word that can make or break relationships. It requires us to believe someone without any evidence of the person’s character. It makes us look at who we are and where we’ve been to figure out what we’re going to do next. It’s that intangible feeling that allows us to take the leap of faith and try something new knowing that however it turns out will be fine.
Anyway, like most people I have my own share of hurts that make me who I am and define how I respond in certain situations. I have identified my childhood and adult trust issues (although not fully worked them out) and for the most part, I can identify when a past situation similar to a current one is causing me to make certain choices. Most times I correct my behavior and try something different to see what result I get, but others I don’t. It is my personal goal to get to the point where each situation is evaluated on its own merit and not judged based on a prior experience with a different person under different circumstances. For me, that’s a rich life, helps me evolve into a better person and see things in a way I probably wouldn’t if I chose to keep making the same decisions.
The most obvious thing I observe is that people are afraid to give up what they know for what they don’t know. I don’t know if it’s human nature, but my informal observations lead me to believe that people are content with the tarnished coin in their hand instead of the shiny one off in the distance. Yeah, it requires walking, a little bit of hiking, sweating, not having a cold Pepsi on hand and probably a scratch or two, but the old adage goes “it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey.” Even if the shining coin in the distance isn’t worth much, won’t telling the story of how you got it be entertaining? And from what I understand and experienced, people gain a lot more knowledge and wisdom on the way to where they’re going than when they reach the destination. I’ve never been the one to just be content with what I feel like life dealt me. It may have taken a while to get started, but eventually I did. In my mind, there are always other options. The question was more about if I wanted to take a couple scrapes or try to keep cleaning the old tarnished, familiar coin in my hand.
It takes courage to decide to step out into the unknown. I like to think that I try to approach situations with this in mind. I’ve leaped off a few cliffs and landed just fine. No, the experiences weren’t always perfect, but they each came with an understanding of another person, who I am and how I can be better and just what the other person needed along his or her personal journey. Wanting to experience a life different than the one I currently live requires acting in a new way and believing a new story. There is no need to come to the table with a never-ending list of things I need, want and expect as I had in the past, but to remember that each person has something to offer that will affect the rest of my life directly or indirectly. With time and some conscious effort, I think trusting the unknown is coming along nicely. I’m starting to see what I considered new ways of handling situations are becoming part of who I am and has a positive impact on my life. Not only that, it allows me to get out and live my life the way I want without apology or regret.