So last week, this message appeared on my laptop screen when I tried to log in.
After I got over the bizarre nature of the message, I found one of our IT staff members, who explained that I had synced my phone to my new password before my laptop, which had set everything out of whack. It seemed that my laptop login felt like there was a problem as it was now a “secondary” login source.
While I can’t claim to understand the nuances of all of this, I was struck with the poignancy of the message that my laptop had auto-populated.
When there is a problem with trust, our relationships are fraught with danger.
Trust is one of those characteristics of relationships that is very hard to replicate. It requires much work to build, but can be lost in an instant (though, maybe a few instances is more appropriate; the best relationships allow for some mistakes to be made).
And, when we no longer have the level of trust that we once did, we are less likely to go forward with change, or, as in the case of my laptop, even normal activities.
Sometimes a loss of trust can be due to something that has been done wrong. In these cases, we easily understand the problem, and can easily correct it, assuming we choose to do so.
In other cases, the loss of trust stems more from a mistake, or from misinterpretation. When this happens, we may not even know that trust has been lost, and so the responses we get from others can throw us off course, and therefore, impact our ability to do what is right.
In other words, trust loss can be akin to a self-fulfilling prophecy. The loss of trust in us can put us in a place where things happen that we don’t expect, and therefore, we lose trust in others, continuing the downward spiral of relationship breaking.
What can we do to keep trust building upwards? Some of the steps I attempt to take are to be blunt (but appropriate), be transparent as early as possible, and ask plenty of questions to clarify what could lead to misconceptions or misunderstandings.
This doesn’t always solve everything, but, by being proactive, we can keep relationships strong, and identify when trust could be a problem. What did I learn from my laptop/password experience? To remember that we need to recognize the value of process, and the need to trust in relationships that we have built.