A few months ago I brought our new-to-us minivan (gotta love the minivan life!) to get a routine oil change. I’ve been bringing my vehicles to the same garage for a number of years now and really trust the technicians that work on our vehicles there. On my most recent venture, they stated that we needed new struts (man was I bummed). In order for it to be covered by warranty, we had to bring it to a dealership to get a second opinion. They said we in fact didn’t need the struts replaced. It was a little hard for me to trust their opinion (even after they showed it to me). I began to ask myself why was it hard to believe a professional technician? After contemplation, I realized that it was trust that was missing.
Trust has a lot to do with everyday life, no matter what path you are on. It’s one of the major, if not the major, virtue of life. So what is trust? According to dictionary.com trust is the “reliance on the integrity, strength, ability, surety, etc., of a person or thing; confidence.” If we consider this definition of trust to be true, then someone who is reliable has a high degree of trust. I’m sure the auto technician from my story is a very reliable individual, so why didn’t I trust him as much as my regular technician? Here’s why...I believe trust has two main components, not only does a person’s reliability count towards trust, but there also needs to be a relationship factor. I had a solid relationship with my regular technician, not the other technician. What I mean by this, is we need to have strong relationships with others in order for true trust to occur. Here it is broken down into a formula for all you math wizards out there:
trust = relationship+reliability
It’s that simple. If this formula can be followed, true trust can be developed between people. As a teacher, I often believe my students can trust me...but do they truly trust me? Have I built a strong enough relationship with my students for true trust to occur? Before the school year starts, I am going to reflect on building relationships with all students. I’m going to challenge myself to build a trusting relationship with them. After all, it's all about the kids! I challenge you to do the same. Maybe you don’t have students to build trust with, but there is someone in your life that you can build a stronger relationship with; thus, improving trust along the way.